What would persuade officials at the San Francisco Bay Ferry to allow its first private event ever on its iconic ferry? How about a Magical Winter Ferry Ride for 75 children fighting cancer this Christmas?
It all started when the people of a community outreach group called Vallejo Together wanted to do something special for these California kids struggling with illness. The group turned toward the Waterfront because it is one of the best things about their city.
After calling Vallejo Mayor Intintoli to pull some strings, the ferry tour was booked, but kept a secret from families who arrived downtown for a mystery date.
“A mother came to us and said that her son was in line and when he saw the ferry, he wanted to ride it,” says the Vallejo Together Facebook page. “His mom told him that maybe one day he will be able to. He said that he hoped so because it was his dream. When the families found out that they were in fact going into the ferry the young boy jumped up and down raising his hands and said “Mom! My dream came true!”’
The cruise visited hot spots like Alcatraz, the Golden Gate Bridge, Pier 39, and Angel Island.
The inside of the boat was even more exciting for the kids – community businesses and volunteers created 18 stations throughout the ferry, all featuring different activities and food, like cotton candy, face painting, and hanging out with Santa.
Known as SOCK (Supporting Our Cancer Kids), the initiative is just one of many projects that reaches out to those in need.
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A gift was provided to each of the children from the man in the red suit himself, courtesy of A1 Heating and Air.
It’s probably safe to say that none of these volunteers will be on Santa’s naughty list this year.
Photos Courtesy of Rhonda Renfro at Club Stride