Santa's sleigh is bright yellow

This year Santa's big red sleigh is painted bright yellow, at least for a few families in Quincy.

This is the eleventh year of the Make it a Merry Christmas program that the school's transportation handles.

KHQA met with the merry little elves early Thursday morning before this magical sleigh set off on its journey spreading holiday cheer.

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This sleigh isn't powered by eight tiny reindeer, but at the helm is a bright shiny red nose. In the back, plenty of presents for good little girls and boys. On the outside, this sleigh is a school bus. Every year the 100 or so transportation employees help out families who need it during Christmas.

Jony Shaw says, "Some run for me. They wrap. They help at fundraisers. When we have our soups, they help cook."

This year, there are four families on the list that will get some food and toys to make their holiday a little brighter. In October, the transportation department starts asking teachers and principals for some children who might benefit from this program.

Dan Bartlet says, "We wish we could do more."

But what these employees do for the families is magical.

Bartelt says, "It's amazing. The range of emotions goes from laughter and giggles to some tears. It's quite an emotional tug at the heart."

These employees say this never gets old. Jessie Shaw has volunteered for the program for years. She not even an employee of the school district anymore, but year after year she keeps coming back.

Jessie Shaw says, "If you saw the faces of the families when we get there. We've had people who are neighbors that come outside and thank us. It pulls on your heart strings and shows you if you're not doing well, there are always people who are doing worse."

Dan Bartelt says, "It feels good to give back. A lot of the bus drivers bring their children as an example of giving back. It's important to do that."

This program has been going on for a long time, but at some point employees stopped doing this. Ten years ago, Jony Shaw brought it back.

Jony Shaw says, "It's all about the kids."

The employees donate their time, and many of them give money to make the program a hit.

Organization for the next Make it a Merry Christmas usually starts right away.

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