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Pacers Hand Out Toys To Bloomington Kids

The Pacers and Fever mascots were on hand to help pass out toys to kids in Bloomington.

The Indianapolis Pacers brought the holidays to Bloomington early when they distributed toys to children Wednesday at City Hall.

It’s part of the team’s annual “Season of Giving,” where the Pacers join forces with the Indiana Fever to pass out more than 30,000 toys to kids in need. JAKKS Pacific provided the toys.

This is the first year the team’s come to Bloomington. Former player Darnell Hillman says his favorite part of the program is seeing kids’ reactions.

"I enjoy watching the bright smiles that come up on the kids’ faces," Hillman says. "Sometimes we don’t always have a great Christmas ahead of us and certainly being able to come out and give to them and brighten up their days that’s probably my biggest moment."

The Bloomington Police Department will help distribute some of the toys to local service agencies.

Chief Mike Diekhoff says it gives officers an opportunity to build trust with an age group they don’t typically interact with.

"Hopefully this is one of those positive things where maybe their first interaction with a police officer is maybe getting a toy," Diekhoff says.

The Pacers will also hand out toys in Evansville, Fort Wayne, Lafayette and Muncie.

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