By SUNNY LOCKWOOD
Santa's Express is looking for a few good elves.
The Calaveras County program that distributes food, toys and clothing to needy families at Christmas is a little needy itself this time of year.
With about 600 deliveries to make, the program seeks volunteers to help work the phones as well as organize, pack and distribute Christmas baskets.
Established in 1980, Santa's Express is a volunteer program that has become part of the Human Resources Council's Calaveras County Food Bank.
The volunteer crunch comes between Thursday, Dec. 18, and Monday, Dec. 22, said Billy Westernoff, food bank program director.
San Andreas Town Hall on Church Hill Road is the hub of volunteer activity, beginning at 8 a.m. Dec. 18, when volunteers organize the toys.
On Dec. 19, 20 and 21, the food contributions are sorted and packed for delivery.
Distribution begins at 9 a.m. Dec. 22 and lasts all day, Westernoff said.
Volunteers who can lift boxes are in high demand, she said.
This year's HRC's Santa's Express also needs clothing for children 13 and older, said Westernoff.
Toys, clothing and nonperishable food contributions can be made to the program until Dec. 18.