Chelsea IrizarryDec 8, 2017, 11:59 pm

Runners jingle all the way on the Long Beach boardwalk to bring holiday cheer

Participants don holiday apparel for annual 5K run for Toys for Tots

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LONG BEACH — People on the boardwalk braved the cold and dressed up in holiday gear for the annual Jingle Ball 5K run for Toys for Tots.

It's all made possible thanks to the city of Long Beach in cooperation with the local VFW as they hosted the fourth annual event.

Over 200 runners wearing Santa hats, light up necklaces and jingle bells ran on the boardwalk. And there was a special guest leading the race.

"I lead the race on a car called the elite car, and we have it all lit up and festive," said “Santa Claus.”

Each participant is required to bring an unwrapped toy to donate to the annual Marine Corps Toys for Toys drive. Their goal was to collect and distribute new toys as Christmas gifts to children less fortunate in Nassau County.

Assistant Superintendent of the City of Long Beach Parks and Recreation Paul Ferrante helped to organize the run. He says this year they saw a huge turnout.

This year was the first time the race was timed. Afterwards, an awards ceremony was held for several different categories, including best costume.

Many say it's a great way to start the holiday season by helping out their neighbors in need.

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