Christmas comes early for 30 Zundy Elementary students

WICHITA FALLS, Tx (RNN Texoma) - Several Wichita Falls children are riding shiny new bikes and helmets donated by Academy Sports and Outdoors.

It was all part of Academy Sports and Outdoors 16th annual bike donation. This is the 11th event for the store in Wichita Falls.

The children gathered at the school gymnasium for a presentation and then 30 students, in first through third-grade, were surprised with their gifts.

"It's one of the most rewarding things we do every year," Chris Frazier, Academy Sports and Outdoors director said. "It's to see that smile on those kids faces when they get a bike. Whatever reason it is that they're getting the bike, it's very rewarding."

More than 115 donations like this happened across the country.

"I was nervous like I don't even know but I was scared," Marley Santa Maria, 9, said.

The students were chosen by counselors and their teachers based on their grades, attendance, and behavior

"I feel emotional because he won because of his actions in class, for arriving early his grades and they're great grades," Juana Telles said.

Students like second grader Jaime Oogion were anxious to get on their bikes.

"I didn't know I was going to go out and get a surprise," he said.

Zundy Elementary Stacey Darnall said holiday shopping is always difficult and she hopes these bikes can help.

"I just know Christmas can be tough for families for every family I don't care where you are," Darnall said. "More importantly, we want to teach that hard work pays off."

This the first year Zundy Elementary was chosen for the bike donations. Academy Sports and Outdoors donated $250,000 dollars in bikes and helmets to more than 5,100 kids.

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