James Brown toy giveaway attracts a thousand to arena

Monday, Dec. 21, 2009 11:43 AM
Last updated 4:59 PM
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More than a thousand people came to the James Brown Arena this morning for the 19th annual toy giveaway named after the late soul singer.

Some lined up outside in frigid temperatures before 7 a.m. for a chance at a free holiday gift. Children could choose from among a selection that included stuffed animals, bicycles, dolls, action figures and sports equipment.

Malik Watson, 7, and his brother Isaiah, 6, were near the front of the line. Malik chose a bike, and Isaiah chose an action figure.

Their father, Ronnie, said it was worth the wait.

“Anything that makes my boys happy, I'm with it,” he said.

Deanna Brown Thomas, daughter of the Godfather of Soul and president of the James Brown Family Foundation, said the event is important to continue her father's legacy.

“It was very important to my father,” she said. “He grew up in Augusta and he didn't forget where he came from.”

Businesses including Comcast and individuals contributed toys for the effort.

An exact number of toys donated wasn't available, but volunteers estimated more than 1,000 items were available.

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Just Another Day
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Just Another Day 12/21/09 - 12:48 pm
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Just Nuts says="This toy give

Just Nuts says="This toy give away is nothing more than a facade to please you know who. How come these same people are not worried about these children any other time of the year? the AWM is quick to point out these give aways but dont print stuff any other time of the year. Great country eh?"

Boogaloo
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Boogaloo 12/21/09 - 01:13 pm
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JAD, your parody has gotten a

JAD, your parody has gotten a little tired and old don't you think?

baronvonreich
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baronvonreich 12/21/09 - 01:17 pm
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I say that people who can't

I say that people who can't afford children shouldn't have them and those on welfare need to be sterilized.

InChristLove
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InChristLove 12/21/09 - 01:27 pm
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What's your suggestions

What's your suggestions baronvonreich when families have children when they can afford them and later on in life due to circumstances beyond their control they run up on hard times?

js_ee
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js_ee 12/21/09 - 01:48 pm
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If you don't want to give,

If you don't want to give, then don't, but don't knock those who try to help when they can!

KSL
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KSL 12/21/09 - 01:49 pm
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That's what welfare's

That's what welfare's original intent was to be for. Not what it has become since young woman found out it was the way out of their parent's (parents') home.

Amazed
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Amazed 12/21/09 - 01:51 pm
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I truly hope that this toy

I truly hope that this toy giveaway brings joy and happiness to children that might not have received anything for Christmas. We should all remember that the children affected by unemployment or other results of the poor economy or even drug/alcohol abuse by parents did not create the situation and should not suffer if there are kind and generous people willing to help. God Bless them for bringing happiness and love to children in need.

UncleStrom
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UncleStrom 12/21/09 - 01:57 pm
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Amazed, I don't think anybody

Amazed, I don't think anybody could argue with that. I'd rather have the chance to donate to them than have them murdered in the womb. I'd also rather provide free condoms/pills than have this situation arise at all.

kirkham
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kirkham 12/21/09 - 02:55 pm
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The cause of giving is a

The cause of giving is a great one. For those who haven't fallen on or seen hard times be thankful god has and continues to bless you. Keep in mind, there is a new breed of "poor" people now. With corporate collapses, job restructuring, etc, who know's who and when you'll need. Please stop the negativity.

baronvonreich
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baronvonreich 12/21/09 - 02:57 pm
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ICL - welfare AT THE MOST

ICL - welfare AT THE MOST should be short in duration and specifically targeted to those truly experiencing a drastic life changing event beyond their control and responsbility. If a person can't afford to live for a few months without their current income then they are living well beyond their means and have no business breeding.

InChristLove
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InChristLove 12/21/09 - 03:15 pm
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I agree with you

I agree with you barononreich, welfare should be for a short duration but this is not what the article or your original comment was about. This is about giving toys to children who otherwise might not receive anything at Christmas. You comment was if you can't afford children then don't "breed" them. My comment was (and you never answered the question) what do you do about the families that could afford children but now have fallen on hard times, what do you do with the children...send them back? Why such a negative attitude about making a child smile this Christmas season? Are you that much of a scrooge?

johnston.cliff
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johnston.cliff 12/21/09 - 03:26 pm
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If you think a lot of people

If you think a lot of people line up for this giveaway, wait for the next one, and the next one.... (hint: giveaway)

faithson
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faithson 12/21/09 - 04:21 pm
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got asked for a dollar the

got asked for a dollar the other day.. I gave him a five.. for me it is not my business to question what he does with that money.. its GOD's.. this man had a need, i had a fiver.. over and done with, I have quite a bit going on in my life, thinking about where that five got spent is a waste of my precious time.. I leave the little things in our Lord's hands.. so should all those who would question the virtue of 'charity' we see expressed at this time of year. be of good cheer all

Just My Opinion
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Just My Opinion 12/21/09 - 05:21 pm
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It's so very easy for us to

It's so very easy for us to criticize and judge these people...the givers and the takers. But, the truth of the matter is that we don't really know what it in their hearts for making them do what they do. The givers: some may give because it makes them feel great to help someone in need, whereas some may only be doing it because they think it makes them look important or benevolent in someone else's eye. The takers: some may take these items because their lives have been hit with untold turmoil and they have no where else to turn to get a toy for their child, and some of them may take because they just want anything free they can get because that is their lot in life. Sometimes it's just not worth us worrying about because there's not a thing we can do about it. Somewhere amongst all those people, there are good people giving and there are good people/children receiving, and THAT is the bottom line as far as I'm concerned.

HollyHoly
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HollyHoly 12/21/09 - 06:17 pm
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To give in life is always a

To give in life is always a wonderful wonderful thing. Shame on you trying to twist this and make it into something else. Its about the children.

jack2006
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jack2006 12/21/09 - 06:20 pm
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Now isn't the time to judge

Now isn't the time to judge anybody for their life circumstances. Do what you can when you can and just be quiet about it. Now if you really want to talk about something, let's talk about Wilmington OH from 60 Minutes. This is happening all over this country. What do you have to say about that group of people standing in line for food and toys? It is unsettling no matter what part of the world that it is happen. If somebody is able to do something for somebody, just Thank the Lord, add something to the table to be given, lift somebody’s spirit with a smile, and be done with it. From small minds come small things, when you write, it tells your life story in how belittle you are or the opposite, it tells how gracious you are. Look for the positive things in life and contribute to lift instead of pulling down or trying to beat down. It is always joy to see that people are being help and not put down while they are receiving the assistance. Try to open up your heart and soul and you will see the world in a different light.

dani
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dani 12/21/09 - 07:18 pm
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I agree that it is a great

I agree that it is a great program, but....I would love to see it handled in a way that a child could find the gift/gifts on Christmas morning and that they not be subjected to standing in a line getting a hand-out. It just doesn't make sense to teach a young child that others will supply their wants. It wouldn't hurt for Santa Claus and/or the parent/s to get credit for the toys..

baronvonreich
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baronvonreich 12/21/09 - 08:09 pm
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ICL - a kid can survive

ICL - a kid can survive without a toy at Christmas. If the parents can't afford it from their welfare checks they are receiving due to their unforseen and poorly planned for hard times, well then I guess little Johnny doesn't get a toy. It won't hurt him to chase sticks and rocks and use his imagination some either.

BakersfieldCityLimits
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BakersfieldCityLimits 12/21/09 - 08:18 pm
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Where my free stuff at?

Where my free stuff at? This program is bad, and I'll tell you why. Instead of these kids getting nothing for Christmas they end up learning that they can count on others to do for them. If they only got things based on hard work, then maybe they wouldn't have kids that will in the future depend on those who work to provided for them. A little short term pain for long term gain, but it won't happen.

corgimom
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corgimom 12/21/09 - 09:49 pm
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People have a way of not

People have a way of not valuing what is given to them for nothing.

crackerjack
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crackerjack 12/21/09 - 10:09 pm
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I guess most of those toys

I guess most of those toys will be returned to Wally World in exchange for Store Credit. Then they can buy what they want, or sell it to someone at a discount for cash to buy liquor or drugs.

coco rubio
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coco rubio 12/21/09 - 10:24 pm
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like all of you.... i was not

like all of you.... i was not there.... and do not know each family's situation.....but, i just think it's great that these folks can get a christmas gift in the name of james brown.....

mieshel
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mieshel 12/21/09 - 11:05 pm
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These adults making these

These adults making these negative comments are really ignorant...Did you buy at least one toy to contribute? Did you bless a child this holiday season? Instead of complaining about welfare checks like your the only one paying taxes, how about saying "I am blessed" to yourself and really think about what the holiday means. Be a blessing to someone else. God loves a cheerful giver..And yes! I have ....

Patty-P
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Patty-P 12/21/09 - 11:50 pm
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The whole meaning of

The whole meaning of Christmas is in GIVING. Some people need to google the history of the birth of Jesus and the events that took place to signify why we give in the first place. And if there are people in the world who want to give to the less fortunate then let them give. It shouldn't matter whether they get a welfare check or not. We all know the state of the economy and there are a lot of less fortunate children out there. Bless the people who made this event a success.

Harrisburgsurvivor
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Harrisburgsurvivor 12/22/09 - 12:10 am
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Augusta has too many

Augusta has too many unproductive people.

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