HERRIN -- Christmas came early Friday for more than 800 Southern Illinois kids.
First Christian Church of Herrin held a gift giveaway Friday afternoon.
Many area businesses and churches teamed up for the event where kids got to pick out pre-wrapped gifts and then open them right there at the church.
Organizers say the project brings the joy of Christmas to kids who may not get it otherwise.
"Its just a great opportunity for us as churches in the community, but more importantly as parts of the community to be able to serve the people in our community that need us and we're just real excited to get to be a part of that today," said Derrick Evans of the First Christian Church.
A donation from the Modern Woodmen of America made part of the giveaway possible which helped the kids involved get treats, and a visit from Santa later in the afternoon.