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'Giving back to the local community'

Trident Marina, Lake Homes Realty come together for kids

Article by Wendy Sack

Photography by Jennifer Murphree & Georgia Myrex

Originally published in Cullman City Lifestyle

If you were anywhere near Trident Marina on Smith Lake back on Dec. 4, you probably saw something a little out of the ordinary: Santa Claus arriving by boat! The big man himself was a highlight of an inaugural Christmas event organizers hope becomes an annual tradition. Trident Marina and Lake Homes Realty came together to host the event, which was for fun and merriment, but also to raise money and collect donations for local children in need. “We had 106 children that had their photo made with Santa,” said Trident Marine Group Owner and CFO Jeff Tolbert. “We had well in excess of 200 people, and we raised approximately $3,000 in cash charitable donations that were given to needy children in the Cullman County schools. That was just cash donations, no including the toys we collected.” The Christmas fun was organized by Tolbert, along with Lake Homes Realty’s Cindy Myrex and Justin Dyar. Once on shore, Santa (David Bunn) took time to meet with children (and adults) and sit for photos. “The whole focus of it was giving back to the local community,” said Tolbert, “and giving children an opportunity to have a chance to come see Santa Claus and write a letter to Santa Claus.” He continued, “There were hayrides for the children, and I think the adults even enjoyed the hayrides!” A tree lighting capped off the night, and local favorite The Grille at Trident Marina provided finger foods while guests enjoyed bingo games and hot chocolate.    “We're already working on next year to make it considerably bigger,” said Tolbert. Trident Marina is located at 21680 County Road 222 in Crane Hill.

  • Santa Claus with Trident Marina's Jeff Tolbert
  • Beautiful Smith Lake is seen behind the Trident Marina Christmas tree.
  • Santa shares a moment with Cindy Myrex and granddaughter Branch Myrex.
  • Jessi Ellis, Georgia Myrex and Jeff Tolbert pose for a photo with Santa.
  • The Christmas tree at Trident Marina all aglow

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