Families lined up in front of the Latino Merchants Association (LMA) Headquarters to be ushered in one family at a time to applauses, dances, and tables filled with wrapped presents for kids to celebrate Three Kings Day.

Amin Arias, Vice President of LMA said that it is an amazing sight to see all of the kids come in to pick out their presents. “It’s amazing, you see all these beautiful smiles that kids have… I think we should do this all day long in Trenton,” Arias said.

Jenna L Figueroa Kettenburg helps put on a coat Photo | Drew Mumich

During the two-hour event, representatives handed out gifts to children from ages three and above.  Along with other community support, the LMA was able to give approximately 400 wrapped gifts to approximately 400 children. Alongside Jenna L Figueroa Kettenburg, a community activist was handing out coats and letting the kids try on jackets as they left.

Wilson Vargas, part of the Latino Merchant Association, explained that the LMA is a big part of Trenton, and is proud to serve the community.  “We…are involved in any event that we have with the community, trying to help the community however we can, so any kind of giveaway like food donations, clothes, toys, anything we can to help.”

Mariana Tobar, Founder of Tobar LLC explained that she has spent the last couple of days with volunteers like Elizabeth Esperanza this year to be a success and blessing for kids receiving the presents. “Today is a celebration for the Spanish community…this is why usually it’s bigger, but because of the pandemic we’re we’re very, very cautious,” Tobar said. Every person that enter the building was required to mask up before receiving the presents.

Elizabeth Esperanza, a volunteer at the LMA, said that pandemic or no pandemic, just the happiness from the kids is more than enough to have her help out anytime.  “For me personally, my heart like is wow, because I see a lot of kids coming in and I see them open the presents and the looks their faces warm my heart,” said Esperanza.