JAKKS Pacific To Visit Fort Wayne on Friday, Donates Toys to Pacers Sports & Entertainment for 8th Year

By Ryan Stevens | November 29, 2017

For the eighth consecutive year, JAKKS Pacific Toy Company Chairman & CEO Stephen Berman and his company are providing Pacers Sports & Entertainment a major toy donation for distribution to Hoosier children.

Berman, a close friend of PS&E Owner Herb Simon, and JAKKS Pacific, one of the leading U.S. toy companies, will be providing toys to more than 50 youth-serving non-profit organizations throughout Indiana. The donation is part of the annual Pacers and NBA Season of Giving initiative.

In addition, this year’s donation includes toys for children in the hurricane-affected NBA cities of Houston, Miami and Orlando.

Beginning Friday, the Indiana Pacers and Indiana Fever through their Pacers Cares and Fever Cares programs will tip off a state-wide distribution by joining local police departments in donation ceremonies in Fort Wayne, Columbus, Evansville, Greencastle, Connersville, Muncie and Kokomo. In Fort Wayne, the toy distribution will be in partnership with the Mad Ants, the Pacers’ NBA G League affiliate.

Pacers mascot Boomer, Fever mascot Freddy Fever, Pacemates and Pacers front office staff will accompany each visit. In Indianapolis, the Pacers and Fever are again partnering with the Indiana National Guard in the distribution of toys to local agencies.

The toy giveaway will be highlighted on Wednesday, December 13 when the Pacers host Oklahoma City at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. There, Berman, Simon, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and members of both teams will participate in a toy distribution during pre-game and in-game festivities.

“Stephen’s continued generosity knows no bounds and his initiative to reach out with toy donations to children in the three storm-ravaged NBA markets is a profoundly thoughtful gesture,” said Pacers Sports & Entertainment President and COO Rick Fuson. “You simply cannot measure how many children, families and youth-serving organizations have had their holidays brightened because of Stephen’s kindness over the last eight years.”

JAKKS Pacific is based in California and has been designing, developing, producing and marketing toys and consumer products for children around the world since 1995. JAKKS Cares is the philanthropic arm of JAKKS Pacific and since its inception has donated more than $50 million in toys and monetary endowments to millions of underprivileged children around the world.

The holiday toy giveaway is part of the Pacers Cares and NBA Season of Giving, which includes other holiday events such as the “Come To Our House” Thanksgiving Dinner presented by Pacers Thad Young, Al Jefferson, US Foods, PS&E and the Pacers Foundation; “Shop With The Pacers” presented by Simon Malls; and a PS&E Day of Service with volunteers packing more than 100,000 meals for Gleaners Food Bank.

PACERS/FEVER JAKKS PACIFIC TOYS VISITS

  • Friday, Dec. 1., 3:30 p.m., Fort Wayne
  • Tuesday, Dec. 5, 11 a.m., Columbus
  • Thursday, Dec. 7, 10 a.m. (CST), Evansville
  • Monday, Dec. 11, 4 p.m., Greencastle
  • Tuesday, Dec. 12, 1 p.m., Connersville
  • Wednesday, Dec. 13, 7 p.m., Indianapolis, Bankers Life Fieldhouse
  • Tuesday, Dec. 19,10 a.m., Muncie
  • Tuesday, Dec. 19, 1 p.m., Kokomo