GALLERY: Bikers Toy Run delivers joy to community

Santa traded in his sleigh for a Harley-Davidson sidecar on Saturday as Wollongong’s streets were filled with the rumbling sound of motorbikes.

An estimated 250 to 300 motorbikes took part in the 23rd annual Bikers Toy Run from Shellharbour to Flagstaff Hill, the riders bearing Christmas gifts for children in need.

Spokesman Steve Phillips, of Leisure Coast Motorcycle Riders in Wollongong, said the annual event seemed to be getting ‘‘bigger and better’’.

‘‘There was Japanese sports bikes there, scooters, quite a few ladies on their bikes, Harleys as well,’’ he said.

Mr Phillips gave Wollongong Lord Mayor Gordon Bradbery a lift on the back of his motorbike.

Santa, riding in a sidecar, led the convoy and threw lollies to families watching from the side of the road.

‘‘We just do it because we like to give back to the community a little bit and help the kids that are disadvantaged in the Wollongong area,’’ Mr Phillips said.

The presents were to be handed to Anglicare and St Vincent de Paul for distribution.

The Bikers Toy Run is part of Wollongong City Council’s annual Giving Tree events.

‘‘It was an opportunity to show off the great bikes ...  and also do a good job in terms of supporting the community, especially families who will find it a bit tough this Christmas,’’ Cr Bradbery said.

People can donate unwrapped Christmas  presents at the council’s Burelli St headquarters until December 17.

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