Griselda Saucedo said she had an inkling Santa Claus might visit her two young children a little early this year.
She just didn’t expect the red suit-wearing jolly guy to lead dozens of La Raza Motorcycle Club riders, relatives and friends to her neighborhood.
This weekend, seven Visalia families around the Houston Elementary School neighborhood got a surprise visit.
“I heard the motorcycles,” Saucedo said. “I told my children to go and check it out.”
Saucedo’s sons, 9-year-old Jesus and Fabian, 4, spotted Santa right away. His arms were full of gifts.
Jesus, an Oakland Raiders fan, got a football. Fabian scored a handful of Hot Wheels cars and trucks.
“We are thankful they are helping us,” Saucedo said.
Jesus didn’t waste any time taking advantage of his gift. After unwrapping it, Jesus and Santa Claus — a 49ers fan — La Raza’s chapter Vice President Eddie Gonzalez, tossed the football outside.
Jesus even got some tips from a club member on how to hold and throw the football for a perfect spiral.
Anastacio Flores, whose three children received gifts, said the motorcycle club is making a difference in the communities.
“They are sharing what they received,” he said. “It’s something that’s really emotional.”
Flores’ children, 12-year-old Rafael, Rosalba, 3, and Alfredo, 3, received clothes and toys. It was an unexpected bonus this holiday season.
“They will have a really good Christmas,” he said. “I am very thankful they are going to have toys to play with this Christmas.”
That’s the message Gonzalez and others want to spread about La Raza Motorcycle Club.
“This is what family is all about,” he said. “This is what we do.”
Motorcycle club members said Saturday’s gift giveaway is part of their purpose and mission.
“We are a family-oriented club,” said Robert Solis, the club’s chapter president.
La Raza members say they’re out in the community to debunk preconceived notions about motorcycles clubs, including unruliness and disregard for others.
Moises Correa, the Visalia chapter secretary, said the motorcycle club’s intent is clear.
“We are trying to do what other fraternal organizations do,” he said. “We are here to help the community. We are here to do what we can.”
Solis added that club members must have good character, seek to improve the community and believe in brotherhood.
This is the third Christmas the motorcycle club has delivered toys to families.
Started 10 years ago, La Raza Motorcycle Club now has two chapters: one in Visalia and one in Fresno. The Visalia chapter has about 20 members while Fresno has five.