No one can deny that this city has proven itself, time after time, to be a generous, helpful and neighborly city and this year proves to be no different. At the live taping of the “CMA Country Christmas” special, which will re-air on ABC December 20, concert guests were asked to bring a new toy with them to donate to kids who might not otherwise get a gift this year. Because of this small request and the generosity of Country Music Industry and its fans, over 5000 were collected (in most part at the concert) that will be distributed to those kids by the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Foundation.
“This community is well known for its giving nature,” said Sarah Trahern, CMA Chief Executive Officer. “I’m not surprised that they would step up to contribute to a cause this meaningful during the holidays, but I am in awe of the outpouring of gifts and grateful to our artists, industry and fans for helping to make dreams come true for children this Christmas.”
CMA wasn’t the only organization that was joyful of the Nashville spirit of giving, “On behalf of the Toys for Tots Foundation as well as every less fortunate child in Middle Tennessee that will receive Toys for Tots gifts this Christmas, I would like to personally thank each and every one of you who made a contribution in any way! In the first year of the partnership with the Country Music Association at the CMA Awards Red Carpet event as well as the ‘CMA Country Christmas’ taping we managed to raise over 50 boxes of toys to be given out to these less fortunate children,” said U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Dennis E. Bowers, Jr. “We look forward to working with the Country Music Association for years to come and making this grow year after year to help less fortunate children in the local Middle Tennessee area.”
The U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Foundation has been supported by The Walt Disney Company (TWDC) for over 60 years. The foundation connects the dots between families and kids in need at holiday time with gennerous folk, like people right here in Nashville, who are willing and wanting to help a child believe in the magic of the season. The mission of the foundation is to collect new, unwrapped toys during November and December every year and distribute them out as Christmas gifts to needy children in the community in which the campaign was held.
The “CMA Country Christmas” taping, at which most of these toys were collected, was hosted by Jennifer Nettles for the fifty year. The special featured performances by Sara Evens, Lucy Hale, Hunter Hayes, Alan Jackson, Little Big Town, LeAnn Rimes, Michael W. Smith, Brett Eldridge, Dan + Shay, Clare Bowen, Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley. Idina Menzel joined Nettles in a duet; other duets were performed by Underwood and Paisley as well as Brad Paisley jamming with rock legend Steven Tyler. You can watch this incredible special when it reairs on Saturday, December 20 on ABC.