PRESIDIO OF MONTEREY, Calif. - As the holidays begins to draw near, you can be sure that your local Marine Corps Toys for Tots coordinator is already working on the this year's Toys for Tots campaign.

Since 1947, Marines have been making Christmas wishes come true for needy children. Toys for Tots in Monterey makes a difference in the lives of the less fortunate children of the community.

Last year, some 1,000 children in the Monterey area received toys through Toys for Tots. This year the need is expected to be greater, so the Marines are asking for help.

The local Toys for Tots team works very hard to make Toys for Tots a success, but they could never do it without the help of concerned citizens from the Monterey area. The Toys for Tots campaign has already arranged the following sites where potential donors can drop off toys.

*Presidio of Monterey: Taylor Hall, 311th Training Squadron, 314th Training Squadron, Center for Information Dominance Detachment.

*Naval Postgraduate School: Navy Exchange.

*Monterey: Del Monte Center (Thinker Toys and Toys "R" Us temporary store), American Legion, Woody's Bayview Grill, Bubba Gumps, Ocean's 18 Mini Golf, Monterey Mirror Maze, Rising Star Gymnastics Training Center, Gems by the Sea, Steinbeck Court, Turtle Bay Taqueria, Trailside Cafe & Coffee House.

*Pacific Grove: Chatterbeaux Shoppe, Bratty & Bluhm Real Estate, PG Library, Grove Market.

*Carmel: Forge in the Forest Restaurant, Nielsen Bros Market Inc., Carmel Chamber of Commerce, Forest Theater Golden Bough Theater, Brintons.

For the many volunteers who make Toys for Tots possible year after year, Toys for Tots embodies the true spirit of Christmas. The gift of a shiny new toy -- something that most children take for granted -- means to a needy child that someone cares, that he or she hasn't been forgotten, that Christmas hasn't passed him or her by.

The Marine Corps Reserve members believe that "Every Child deserves a Little Christmas," and they are asking everyone to help send the needy children of the community a message of hope this Christmas through the gift of a new toy. They greatly appreciate any donation community members can make and look forward to making a Merry Christmas for these children.