Christmas comes early for Edmonton Grade 1 class at St. Alphonsus

December 16, 2014

Christmas came a few days early for a group of Grade 1 students in central Edmonton Tuesday, after a visitor in a big red suit surprised them with a sack full of gifts.

The classroom of 38 first graders at St. Alphonsus School had sent written letters earlier this year with all their Christmas wishes, and thanks to help from employees at Packers Plus, gifts and letters were handed out to the group just in time for the holidays.

April McLachlan, a planner with Packers Plus who helped coordinate the presents, said she was inspired to give back to a local elementary after years of donating with her family.

“The idea came about because my family and I have been involved in Secret Santa projects for quite a few years,” said McLachlan, decked out in an elf attire Tuesday.

“It’s pretty amazing. I remember what it’s like at that age and being all excited and knowing that he was watching and I had to be really good. It’s really nice to see them reading the letters and knowing he’s keeping an eye on them.”

The students’ teacher, Brittany Aker, said it was a really special day for the students. “This is something they’re going to remember for the rest of their life,” Aker said. “This is huge.”

Gifts ranged from dollhouses to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and were handed out with a special letter to the students from the company’s “Santas.”