SJ Sharks surprise under served families with holiday gifts

The holidays are a little brighter for 38 families in need in the South Bay, thanks to the San Jose Sharks. The players surprised underserved families with gifts that they bought themselves on Tuesday night.

For Susana Vizzarra and her two young children, for the first time they won't have a Christmas tree. They don't have a place they can call their own.

"It makes me feel sad especially for my kids because my kids want a Christmas tree and we don't have a place to live right now," said Vizzarra.

Down on her luck with no money for presents, she's not alone. She's one of 30 low-income families chosen by San Jose Unified's Healthy Start Family Resource Program. Their wish lists were given to San Jose Sharks players.
"I just found out right now he's a Sharks player," said Vizzarra.

Her family was adopted by San Jose Sharks Forward Tommy Wingels, who called it a humbling experience, thinking of his 10-month-old daughter.

"I think Christmas is this time of year is about family," said Wingels.

Throughout the night, the families were treated to ice skating with Sharkie and a holiday meal with the players. However, the best part was when the families were given presents.

"Just to see the looks on their faces when they are opening a present and seeing this is theirs they are very happy and we are happy to be doing this," said San Jose Sharks Center Logan Couture.

"To be honest I was actually going to cry," said 11 year old Eli Wright.

Other Sharks players echoed the importance to give back. Team Captain Joe Pavelski hopes it brings them joy.

"A nice memory, a fun night, something they can look back on and say they really enjoyed it," said Pavelski.

At least on this night, for the Vizzarra family, it was a chance to forget their problems.        

"They are going to get something," said Vizzarra. "I'm happy and I'm excited."

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