The Roanoke Rapids Police Club is holding its inaugural cornhole tournament to help raise funds to continue making Christmas special for area children.

The event, planned for Oct. 16 and called “Tossing Bags for Kids,” is a first for the organization, which is an extension of the Roanoke Rapids Police Department.

On Thursday, Chief Bobby Martin said throughout the year, the police club tries to put together fundraisers to raise money for Christmas For The Kids, which will help buy toys, clothes and other items for less fortunate children. Martin said those involved try to get an idea of the child’s needs.

“It’s one of our most important programs that we do,” he said. “We always want to make sure we try to get as much as we can with the amount of money that we try to provide for each child.”

Martin said with the recent retirement of Lt. Bruce Norton, who headed the police club and continues in some capacity, Officer Joey Spragins stepped up into the lead role.

“Joey was like, ‘Hey, let’s try something different,’ ” he said. “So, he put the plan into action and started going around talking to some of our local businesses, and it’s going to be a great program, and a lot of the local businesses have stepped up for sponsorship.”

Martin said items donated by businesses will be raffled off.

According to the club’s social media page, one of the items is a grill.

Martin said it is just something the club is doing differently and trying to get new programs in to raise as much money as possible when it comes time for Christmas for the less fortunate children in the area.

“It’s tough to know that you have kids in the community that if these programs don’t touch their lives, they may not have much of a Christmas at all,” he said. “That’s what our goal is to try to touch and help as many families as we can.”

Martin said they were able to help nearly 45 children last year.

“If you’ve never been a part of this Christmas for Kids, if you’ve never been out and volunteered if you just want to come and watch to see the faces of the kids — that’s what makes the program,” he said. “It will bring tears to your eyes.”

Onsite registrations for the event will be from 9 to 10 a.m. at the Tractor Supply parking lot in Roanoke Rapids. The first pitch will be at 10 a.m. There is a cost of $50 per team. Cash prizes will be given for first and second place (amount depends on how many participate), and third place will receive a trophy. After the tournament, there will be a “Luck of the Draw” tournament at the cost of $10.

Some of the sponsors so far for the event are: Lynch’s Signs & Graphics, Don Juan Mexican Restaurant, David’s Towing & Customs, Steve’s Tire & Automotive, Strength of Helping Handz, Carolina Eagle Distributing, Jon’s Auto Glass Inc., Black Cat Harley Davidson, McPherson Beverages Inc., Great Clips Hair Salon, Lowe’s, Valley Outfitters, New Dixie Oil Corp., The Mill Coffee & Eatery, Today’s Electronics, AAA Security, Elias Butcher Shop and the Rewritten Story Foundation.

Follow the club on Facebook for updates and to purchase tickets to the tournament visit bit.ly/3oL1FfK.

If you would like to donate to Christmas For The Kids, call Chief Martin at 252-533-2816.