Giving parents the ability to choose how they want to surprise their children 

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In Early December, we begin stocking our Santa Shop with a broad range of new toys, books, crafts and activities, as well as new clothes for children from ages 1 through 12.  The toys are donated — from individuals and organizations throughout the island — and the clothes are purchased throughout the year, generally at Deep Well discounts, by our veteran volunteer shoppers.


Parents come in at appointed times, either for a morning or afternoon shopping session, without their children present.  Shelves are re-stocked between sessions to provide a full selection for everyone.  As we hoped it would, the new program seems to bring greater joy to the children and a greater sense of dignity to the parents.

Although Deep Well has helped make the holidays special for thousands of children through the years, the debut of the Santa Shop in 2013 was a smashing success.  Why?...Because it empowered families to have greater involvement in their children's Christmas, with the opportunity to select the items they knew their children would like best.  And the kids were more surprised than ever!  Click above to see how donors make the magic happen from start to finish.


Another reason for the Santa Shop's success has been the generosity of individuals and organizations on Hilton Head Island.  Their individual gifts and numerous toy drives have always been the keys to making this and other Deep Well programs a real value to the community.  Some look at it as "giving back;" some help "just because" — no matter the reason, the spirit of giving is alive and well here.  


Families begin to register for the Santa Shop and a "Christmas basket" meal on Saturdays in November.


Last year, almost 900 children, ages one through 12, were able to select:

  • a toy from each of two categories

  • two books

  • an outfit or piece of outerwear

  • a ball or similar recreational gift

  • a game or stuffed animal

  • a bag of stocking stuffers




Deep Well Project - SANTA SHOP Wish List – 2020

Greatest Wishes, Across all Age Groups of Children:

  • Books, Books, Books!  Ages 1-12

  • Stuffed Animals – every child receives one!

  • Batteries to power toys – mostly AA’s

  • Board Games:  favorites include;

    • Pictionary, Memory, Monopoly, Sequence, Spoons, What’s That Smell?

      Twister5,  Crowns, OperationBrain Fart,  Game Light up, Air Hover Soccer Game

  • Sports Equipment: 

    • Scooters, Skateboards, Baseball mitts/balls

    • Basketballs, Volleyballs, Fishing poles,

    • Tennis racquets/ball

    • #1:SOCCER balls

    • Playground balls

Want to Shop for a Specific Age Child?  These items are great for Children ages 1-6:

  • Little Live Pets                Paw Patrol toys                Baby Shark toys        

  • PJ Masks toys                  Dress-Up clothes             Princess items        

  •  Slime kits                        Trolls                                  Our Generation dolls/items                  

  • LOL Dolls & toys             Small riding toys              Super Hero toys                                      

  • My Little Pony toys         Unicorn items                  Sesame Street toys

Prefer to Shop for an Older Child?  These items are a hit with Children age 6-12:

  • Crayola Light Board            Watches                             Books, especially ages 10-12  

  • Craft Kits                               Pre-Teen Make-up            Jewelry and Jewelry-Making Kits 

  • Lava Lamps                          Art Supplies                       Plush Throws and Pillows     

  • Magnetic Dart Boards        Earphones/Ear buds        Remote Control cars, w/ batteries           

  • HairDorables/Hair chalk    Bey Blades                          Pro Teams hats/jerseys               

  • Foam Rocket Launchers     Athletic Slides (shoes), Nike/Addidas


Some people ask us, “Is it better to have MORE less-expensive toys, or FEWER

high-quality toys?”

Our recommendation is FEWER high-quality toys, so the child will have a present that lasts longer and they can hopefully enjoy for many months, hopefully years!

The Santa Shop will be streamlined for social distancing this year, but Deep Well is determined to offer meaningful gifts that parents personally select for their children.  In lieu of shopping, if you would prefer to make a monetary donation flagged “Santa Shop,” the Deep Well Elves will do the shopping for you!

For some children, this may be the only new toy or article of clothing they’ve ever had.   Thanks for making the joy of the Santa Shop come alive for these children!


Sincerely, The Deep Well Project Santa Shop Elves