Annual Capitol drive scores 65 bikes, gifts for Toys for Tots |

Annual Capitol drive scores 65 bikes, gifts for Toys for Tots

Appeal Capitol Bureau

Defying the tough economic times, the annual Christmas drive organized by Nevada’s Capitol Police bought a record 65 bicycles for needy children.

This year, they were joined by the Peace Officers Association, Legislative Police and employees in the fundraiser to benefit the Marine Corps Toys for Tots drive.

“This is wonderful. We are going to make so many kids happy,” said Joyce Buckingham of Toys for Tots.

Cpl. Randal Smith of the Capitol Police said the Legislative Council Bureau brought 30 bikes over. He and his fellow officers ” assisted by a $400 contribution from the governor’s office ” bought 35 bikes. Buckingham said those bikes already have names on them.

In addition, Smith said LCB employees contributed $876 in cash to the program. The police association raised $1,000 in cash.

Buckingham said contributions started slowly this year and she was concerned about covering the need in the Carson City area.

“Donations are just now starting to come in,” she said.

She said one anonymous donor brought her 10 hundred dollar bills, saying he wanted no publicity for the donation.

Smith said each of the children who gets a bicycle will also get a helmet and lock.

Beyond the bicycles, donors provided numerous toys as well as blankets, gloves and hats.

There was so much in the main flood hall of the Capitol that Buckingham said she had to rent a truck to collect it all.

“This is a record,” said Smith, who came up with the idea a decade ago..

Contact reporter Geoff Dornan at or 687-8750.