Staff Report

The Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians donated $25,000 to the annual Toys for Tots campaign during a concert by the pop and R&B group 98 Degrees in December, tribal officials announced.

This year’s donation brings the tribe’s total contributions to Toys for Tots, since its first benefit concert in 2004, to $400,000.

Since 2004, the resort has designated a December concert to bring awareness to the Central Coast Marine Corps Reserves’ Toys for Tots campaign, which serves families in Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties through partnerships with local agencies, such as Unity Shoppe, People Helping People, the Salvation Army, Community Action Commission, Tribal TANF Program and the Boys & Girls Club.

“We have been proud to partner with Toys for Tots throughout the years, and we support our local chapter’s efforts to help make the holiday season a little bit brighter for children in our county,” said Tribal Chairman Kenneth Kahn.

Kathy Marshall of the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians presented the $25,000 donation check to retired 1st Sgt. Soledad Kennedy, the Marine Corps League 1340 Toys for Tots Coordinator for Santa Barbara County, and 1st Vice Commander Nathaniel Taylor. 

“Over the past 16 years, the support of the Santa Ynez Chumash has been very instrumental to the Toys for Tots program,” Kennedy said. “Their partnership with the Marine Corps League has continually provided monetary support to purchase toys and books for children in Santa Barbara County. Every child deserves a gift for Christmas, and because of the tribe’s annual donations, the Toys for Tots program in Santa Barbara County has flourished.”

For more information on how to donate a toy or make a monetary donation, visit