Community elves help Santa's Headquarters in Gogebic County

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IRONWOOD, Mich. (WLUC) - This week Santa is taking a break from the North Pole and moving his headquarters to Gogebic County.

But he wouldn’t be able fill the Memorial Building if it weren’t for his community elves, like Expensify.

"We went yesterday to local businesses and purchased $1,000 worth of toys, clothes and pajamas for our local families," said Courtney Ofstad, an Expensify success coach agent," it's the least we could do."

Colemen Engineering, like Expensify, is part of 25 community organizations that become gift locations were the public can also drop off toys.

"We are a small cog in a big wheel," said Paul Anderson, of Colemen. "It’s all about putting smiles on the children’s faces and bringing happiness into the Christmas season."

Once the gifts are delivered to the headquarters, the younger elves help sort them.

"We organize them by age or stocking stuffers," said 12th grader Ella Lynott. "It’s very important that these kids get something for Christmas."

This year, 190 families in Gogebic County were in need of Santa’s help. And thanks to hundreds of community members, 425 local children will have gifts to open.

"Families get to come in and shop for their kids," explained Erin Ross, a coordinator for Santa's Headquarters. "One of the things we like about that is parents can give the gifts from whoever they want it to be, so the kid’s don’t have to know that the gifts are a donation."

Families will have a chance to visit Santa’s Headquarters in Ironwood on Wednesday and Watersmeet Community Center on Thursday.

"To see the families who are so thankful for the support that they get, this is my favorite project of the year," said Ross.

Organizers say Santa has plans to bring his headquarters to Gogebic County for many years to come.

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