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2023 Picayune-KBEY Toy Drive makes Santa smile

The Picayune-KBEY Toy Drive 2023

Hundreds of toys were donated by Highland Lakes residents to The Picayune Magazine-KBEY 103.9 FM Radio Picayune Toy Drive on Dec. 6. Staff photo by Nathan Bush

Generous Highland Lakes residents donated $8,467 and hundreds of toys during The Picayune Magazine-KBEY 103.9 FM Radio Picayune Toy Drive on Wednesday, Dec. 6. The money will be used to purchase more toys, and all of them will be distributed to local families in Marble Falls, Granite Shoals, and Burnet. 

“As always, our listeners and readers rose to the Christmas spirit and made sure that children in the Highland Lakes have presents to open this Christmas,” said KBEY Operations Manager Ben Shields.

The annual toy drive benefits Highland Lakes Christmas is for Kids, Granite Shoals Christmas Outreach, and Burnet County Santa’s Helpers. It has been going strong since 2011. 

“Every year, I leave the toy drive with a big smile on my face knowing that there is still a lot of good out there in the community,” Shields said.

Shields broadcast live while collecting donations from 6 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Chevrolet Buick, 2301 U.S. 281 North in Marble Falls. 

Local music talents performing on air included John Arthur Martinez; a trio of Bill Rives, Vickie McMurray, and Kevin Holdler; and the Here Comes Treble saxophone quartet.

“We sure are grateful for everyone who took the time and effort to make the toy drive another success,” Shields said.

Morning show host Mac McClennahan broadcast live from the Burnet Fire Station, 2002 U.S. 281 South.

“From folks dropping off a couple of bucks to those bringing pickup loads of toys, you can see the twinkle in their eyes because they know they’re helping someone right here in our community,” McClennahan said. “And that’s something we can all feed good about, especially in these times.”

Public figures such as Burnet County Clerk Vicinta Stafford, Burnet County Precinct 2 Commissioner Damon Beierle, and Burnet Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Allison McKee visited with McClennehan during the daylong broadcast.

“It’s so heartwarming to see the community show up for this event,” McClennahan said.

Toy distribution day is Dec. 16. 


People can pick up applications for Highland Lakes Christmas is for Kids from the Community Resource Center/The Helping Center at 1016 Broadway in Marble Falls or the Department of Health and Human Services Office at 1406 Resource Parkway in Marble Falls. The deadline to apply is Dec. 11.

Families residing in Granite Shoals must have their applications for toys submitted to Granite Shoals Christmas Outreach by Dec. 13. Those applications are available at Highland Lakes Elementary School, 8200 RR 1431 in Granite Shoals, or in Marble Falls at the Community Resource Center/The Helping Center, 1016 Broadway, and the Department of Health and Human Services Office at 1406 Broadway.

The deadline for Burnet County residents for applications to receive toys from Burnet County Santa’s Helpers has already lapsed.