Bed-Stuy kids flip out when Nets star surprises them with Xmas gifts

Bed-Stuy kids flip out when Nets star surprises them with Xmas gifts
Photo by Louise Wateridge

Christmas came early for these kids!

Youngsters were over the moon when Brooklyn Nets star Thaddeus Young paid a surprise visit to their Bedford-Stuyvesant after-school program with a bundle of toys and a Christmas tree on Thursday, according to an organizer.

“The children were completely taken by surprise,” said Sonya Shields of Brooklyn Community Services, which runs the program at PS 21 on Chauncey Street. “From the moment the tree came in, they were screaming at the top of their lungs.”

The ball-player delivered 250 gifts throughout the day to kids — who come from the elementary school and another one in Brownsville — handing out basketballs, board games, and race cars to delighted tykes aged from Kindergarten through 10 years old.

The baller also set up a tree — donated by local service Tyler’s Trees — and helped the kids decorate it with the holiday trimmings.

Some of the younger tots just thought Young was some super nice stranger, but older kids recognized Young and were thrilled to hang out with a star athlete, said Shields.

“When they heard Thaddeus from the Nets was coming, they just lost it,” she said. “It was really special.”

Young also had a blast decorating the tree and handing out playthings, and the Nets are proud to have made the kids’ holiday seasons, a team rep said

“It was a great opportunity for our organization and of course for Thaddeus,” said Jeff Scott. “Each kid had an amazing reaction, and were able to kick off their holiday in a special way with the Brooklyn Nets.”

Reach reporter Allegra Hobbs at ahobbs@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–8312.