The Sixth Annual Christmas Toy Airlift, a project of the Virginia Chapter 99s, invites volunteer pilots from across the Commonwealth to fly into Chesterfield County Airport on Saturday, December 8 to deliver gifts for military families and for hospitalized veterans.
Visitors are invited to fly in or drive to the airport to join in the festivities including food, music and an opportunity to welcome Santa Claus. Santa will arrive by private aircraft at 10:00 a.m. and will greet children in the terminal until 2:00 p.m.
Children who wish to bring donations for the Airlift can give them directly to Santa. Live Christmas music will be provided by several groups throughout the day including the L.C. Bird Choir, Bon Air Strings, and Walt Street, a retired soloist from the Army Band. The event will last from 8:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. and the rain date is Sunday, December 9.
Collection boxes for toys were setup at a number of public airports in Virginia. Some Maryland airports are also participating as well as some pilots from as far away as eastern Pennsylvania. Last year the Toy Airlift brought in over 900 toys for children of military personnel and over 200 gifts and $655 in gift cards for McGuire Veterans Hospital.
The Ninety-Nines, Inc. (an international organization of women pilots) was founded in 1929 by 99 licensed women pilots for the mutual support and advancement of aviation.
The Virginia Department of Aviation continually strives to become the standard of excellence among state aviation agencies through its cultivation of an advanced aviation system that is safe, secure and provides for economic development; its promotion of aviation education and awareness; and by providing flight services for Commonwealth leadership and state agencies.