Struggling parents are getting a big gift under the tree this holiday season thanks to several local organizations.
For dozens of Coastal Bend children, Christmas came early, but it wasn't Santa bringing the good cheer. For eight years now, Bay Area Bicycles has partnered with local radio stations and volunteer groups to give wheels to youngsters who might not otherwise have a bicycle.
"These kids are from Child Protective Services," explained Tom Neagli with Bay Area Bicycles. "Harvey is a big focus this year, because so many kids lost their bicycles."
Area children were nominated and selected for this season's "Bikes for Kids" program, then braving Saturday's chilly temperatures to await their new rides.
"This is an awesome day, because I've never had a bicycle," said Maelynn Benavides, who received a bike from the program.
Children selected were measured beforehand to ensure their big gift was the perfect fit.
"And when you say custom fit, the seat is actually fitted for them. The handlebars are fitted for them," said Neagli.
For many families, the program meant a blessing to round out 2017, where all too many South Texas families have struggled to make ends meet.