The longtime tradition that is the Singing for Toys event once again filled the Calhoun Walmart with the youthful voices of local elementary school students singing the songs of the season.

Starting Thursday morning, students from Calhoun and Gordon County schools sang into the afternoon as Gordon EMS personnel worked to collect monetary contributions and toys at the store for the Voluntary Action Center’s annual Christmas program. The donations go to local children in need this holiday season.

Gordon EMS partners with Walmart and the United Way of Gordon County on the annual project. Collections started last weekend and picked back up Thursday. Additional collection times will be available on Saturday and Sunday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day.

The singing performances Thursday started with Tolbert Elementary students and were followed by students from Red Bud Elementary, Sonoraville Elementary, Fairmount Elementary, Calhoun Complex, Belwood Elementary and Swain Elementary.

Shoppers gathered around the student choruses to listen in as they shopped.

“Our community has continually supported this toy drive year after year,” said Gordon EMS captain Mark Bramblett in a news release. “We hope to benefit and reach as many families in need as possible in Gordon County.”

Gordon EMS is aiming to receive donations from at least 100 organizations or individuals of at least $100 each, to impact the lives of hundreds of children in Gordon County. Monetary donations of any amount are also accepted and appreciated.

Donations can be picked up by calling 706-506-0369, or by emailing mark.bramblett@ahss.org. The deadline for donations is Dec. 13.