The Spokesman-Review Christmas Fund exists because of the generous donations of the newspaper's readers and area businesses. From Thanksgiving to Dec. 30, the paper accepts donations and publishes articles listing everyone who participates.
Then, through the expert coordination of Catholic Charities and the Volunteers of America, the money is used to open The Christmas Bureau for two weeks in December. The money buys thousands of high-quality toys in January when prices are low. The charities coordinate to gather and train more than 200 volunteers who help make the bureau run smoothly.
Needy families can come to the bureau, held at the Spokane County Fair and Expo Center (404 N. Havana) to pick out a toy and a book for each of their children for Christmas Day. In addition, each household receives a grocery-store voucher to stock the cupboards for the holidays.
The result is an opportunity for people in the greater Inland Northwest community to take care of their less-fortunate neighbors. It's a vast undertaking, and one that hopes to make the holiday a bit brighter for those in need.
Fri., Dec. 13, 2019
Parents, grandparents search for the perfect gift at the Christmas Bureau; daily donations see big drop
Big crowds came to the Spokane County Fair and Expo Center Thursday for the second day of the Christmas Bureau, as people lined up to get food vouchers for their …
Thu., Dec. 12, 2019
Christmas Bureau bustles on its first day
The toy room was busy and lines were long Wednesday as people ventured out on snowy roads for the first day of the Christmas Bureau at the Spokane County Fair …
Wed., Dec. 11, 2019
Volunteers unload teddy bears, prepare to open Christmas Bureau doors
Last minute preparations were underway Tuesday at the Spokane County Fair and Expo Center as volunteers prepared to open the doors of the Christmas Bureau to recipients Wednesday morning.
Tue., Dec. 10, 2019
Christmas Bureau hopes to find sponsor to preserve the gift of a book for every child
Volunteers of America spends all year buying about 14,000 books to be given away to children during the Christmas Bureau. They’re for all ages and all tastes and parents are …
Mon., Dec. 9, 2019
Local businesses keep the Christmas Bureau humming
Volunteers need to be fed, toys need to be bagged and musicians need a place to play to bring the Christmas Bureau to life every year. The bureau will open …
Sun., Dec. 8, 2019
Teddy bear toss nets record 8,604 stuffed animals for Christmas Bureau
A cascade of teddy bears hit the ice during the Spokane Chiefs’ annual Teddy Bear Toss on Saturday night, prompting a flurry of activity to collect up the thousands of …
UPDATED: Fri., Dec. 6, 2019
Longtime Christmas Bureau volunteer is back after cancer treatment
Volunteer Ron Waybright has spent part of December the past 12 years handing out toys and books to children as part of the Christmas Bureau, which is a collaboration among …
UPDATED: Fri., Dec. 6, 2019
Christmas Bureau seeks woodworkers to make traditional trucks
The Christmas Bureau needs a little last-minute help from local residents with woodworking skills who are willing and able to make a few simple wooden trucks in the next week.
Thu., Dec. 5, 2019
Volunteers unpack, assemble Christmas Bureau toys
Volunters showed up to the Ag Building at the Spokane County Fair and Expo Center Wednesday to sort pallets full of toys in anticipation of the first day of the …
Wed., Dec. 4, 2019
Local community groups collect pajamas for the Christmas Bureau
Every year community groups collect children’s pajamas to be distributed at the Christmas Bureau, which gives a toy and a book to every child who comes in the door as …
2018 final: $543,863.56
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I donate?
Donations may be sent to The Spokesman-Review Christmas Fund, P.O. Box 516, Spokane, WA 99210 or delivered to the lobby of the Spokesman-Review at 999 W. Riverside Ave. Please mark prominently, CHRISTMAS FUND.
Can I donate online?
Yes you can. Just click on the PayPal button above, and you'll be able to choose an amount to donate via credit card. If you choose this method of payment, a small percentage goes to PayPal for Internet billing services. When you send in a check to The Christmas Fund, as described above, none of the donation goes to processing.
If you'd like us to send you a receipt for your donation, make sure to include your mailing address in PayPal's comment box. If you'd like a receipt via e-mail, just include a valid e-mail address. In either case, we won't share your information with anyone or use it for any other reason. And feel free to use the comment box to tell us anything you'd like.
How do I qualify?
- Eligibility: There are no income restrictions to participate, but you must bring specific information to the Fairgrounds.
- Bring: Photo ID for you and every person living with you who's 18 or older PLUS proof of current physical address for all adults. That means a power bill, rent receipt or phone bill showing a name at that address (No P.O. boxes). This is required for all adults. Social Security cards not valid as ID.
- For children: Something from their school or daycare for each child living at that address, showing their name, address and birth date. OR A document from DSHS or other social service agency verifying name, address and date of birth OR A WIC folder.
Where is The Christmas Bureau?
The Bureau again will be held at The Spokane County Fair and Expo Center, at 404 N. Havana, in the Ag Building.
When is it open?
Wednesday, Dec. 11, through Friday, Dec. 20, excluding Sundays. Hours are 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. each day.