PennDOT Workers Help Spread Holiday Cheer

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SCRANTON -- PennDOT employees from Lackawanna County took a break from work Thursday to deliver Christmas to some kids in need.

Employees, used to directing plow trucks and construction vehicles rode, in on a fire truck and wearing different uniforms.

The job for the day was delivering Christmas.

PennDOT's civil engineers became Santa's elves. They had gifts for students at Head Start in West Scranton.

"It's a great day at work, a lot of people donated to the cause and we're just happy we can bring the gifts to the kids," said Loni Shalkowski, PennDOT civil engineer.

The kids shared Christmas carols and PennDOT shared gifts. Santa gave PennDOT a peek at each kid's list and the employees raise money to buy one item for each child.

Teachers say it helps bring the holiday to children who might not otherwise have one.

"We do also the angel tree program so they get a lot of things that maybe they're not going to get without those programs, without you guys and this, so yeah, it's huge," said Head Start's Joline Gish.

This is the fourth year PennDOT has brought gifts.

"We are so grateful, and I'm sure the families would tell you also, they are grateful for everything that they do, definitely," Gish said.

The PennDOT employees say they don't need any thanks. This is a great day at the office.

"I just like the feeling, I get to see the kids open their gifts, and they just get so happy to see Santa and take a picture with him. It's just a really good feeling," Shalkowski added.

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