Local nonprofit Grapevine Relief and Community Exchange held an open house for its Christmas Cottage Tuesday, Dec. 11. The annual program allows families in need to enjoy gifts without the extra financial burden.

Each year the GRACE Christmas Cottage is set up in a donated space to house new and unwrapped toys, books, clothes, home appliances and other items for those in need. This year’s location is in a previously empty retail space at 1250 William D. Tate Ave., Grapevine, owned by Shelley and Robert Beall.

Those in need can visit the GRACE main office at 837 E. Walnut St., Grapevine, to see if their family is eligible to “shop” at the Christmas Cottage, GRACE Chief Executive Officer Shonda Schaefer said.

Families are given an allotted amount to use for “purchasing” toys or appliances, and they arrange a time and date to browse and select items, Schaefer said. The last scheduled date to visit and choose gifts at the Christmas Cottage is Dec. 21.

Schaefer estimates the Christmas Cottage benefits approximately 1,200 families.

“It’s as much about building relationships with families as it is about toys under the trees,” she said.

Find out more about the GRACE Christmas Cottage here.