3rd grade class in Madera received early Christmas gift

MADERA, Calif. (KFSN) -- An entire third grade class at Nishimoto Elementary School in Madera thinks all they are getting is a lesson on bicycle safety.

"Pretty much what we've told the children is we have California Highway Patrol out. They're giving you this bike safety assembly so that's what they think today is all about," said Isabel Guzman, Principal.

The 120 bicycles were donated by Celebration Church which raised money to get bikes for three different schools in the Central Valley.

Tuesday night 90 volunteers spent several hours putting the bikes together.

"I think for the Celebration team to be able to see the expressions on the faces of these kids especially at the point of reveal. A lot of them are receiving training, safety training, for bikes but many of them don't have a bike to go home to," said Fred Negrete, Celebration Church - Madera.

Once the CHP heard about the donation they and Valley Children's wanted to take part too, donating helmets for all the kids.

After the assembly the kids lined up with no idea of the surprise they were about to encounter. Two trucks and church volunteers blocked the path of the bikes until they all shouted "move those trucks!"

Completely shocked by what they saw the kids ran screaming to the bike of their choosing. Overwhelmed and excited.

"I thought there was going to be something else and when they moved the truck I saw the bikes in my mind I was saying oh my gosh this is cool," said Andres Calvario, student.

"I like it because its really cool how it's decorated and stuff-- I like it. Is this supposed to be a Christmas gift or something," said Emily Zaragoza, student.

This is the second year Celebration Church has donated the bikes. Everyone involved says they feel privileged to be part of the giveaway.

"I could only think back to when I was a kid and like, oh man, would I not love to be one of these kids charging out there to a sea of bicycles-- I mean how special that was," said Joshua McConnell, Madera CHP.

"It's very emotional, very gratifying to see our children receiving such a generous gift," said Guzman.

Spreading the holiday spirit by giving and receiving the joyful smile of a child.
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