NEWS -- Sault Ste. Marie's Christmas Cheer depot is bracing itself for a big day.

On Saturday, it will hold its donation blitz, a means to gather more donations during what's been a rather difficult time.

"We're only accepting new items this year," said program convenor Diane Marshall. "Just because of the COVID and the regulations that we need to abide by, we must just remain with new items."

Marshall said the group is also in need of canned goods and hygiene products in particular, on top of the many donations of toys it has already received.

The blitz runs from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, while Christmas baskets go out Dec. 16.

Marshall said any donations to the Santa fund are to be made in-person at the store.