On Dec. 10, St. Thomas More Church in Centennial hosted more than 600 children from some of the poorest schools in the Denver area to a Christmas party with Santa, gifts, homemade cookies, candy, pizza, a puppet show and magic show, and arts and crafts.
The 31st annual Project 600 welcomed 654 four- and five-year olds from 10 inner-city Denver Public Schools, as well as two archdiocesan elementary schools: Presentation of Our Lady and St. Francis de Sales.
“It was a great event,” said youth director David Tschumper, who has coordinated Project 600 for more than 20 years. “It is amazing: the generosity of St. Thomas More. If you do the math, we collected over $16,000 worth of toys.”
A team of more than 250 adults and middle- and high-school youths volunteered to help this year.
“It was an amazing turn out this year,” Tschumper said. “I’m always impressed with how many teenagers take the day off of school to help with this event.”
In addition, a group of volunteers from Wells Fargo has helped with the event for about five years. Project 600 was started in 1982 by retired DPS teacher and principal Alvina Crouse when she treated 40 of the poorest kids in her own school to a Christmas party.