Aspen, the 2016 Little Yellow Dog

Aspen, the 2016 Little Yellow Dog, was sold for $16,000 last year for the Journal's Mr. Goodfellow charity that kicks off Sunday. 

Jim Lee, Sioux City Journal

SIOUX CITY | The Sioux City Journal has sponsored Mr. Goodfellow Charities during the holidays to raise money to purchase toys for needy children in Siouxland for more than a century. 

Sunday marks the first day the Journal launches a daily page A1 feature that recognizes the many businesses, groups and individuals that have contributed $1,000 or more to the charity. The goal this holiday season is to raise $135,000 to buy toys for nearly 6,500 underprivileged children.

"Mr. Goodfellow is as important today as it was 103 years ago as many families are trying to make ends meet," said organizer Sue Stusse. "Providing toys for the children takes the stress off those families that are trying to meet the basic needs of food, shelter and clothing."

The fund drive culminates with the annual sale of the Little Yellow Dog pup at noon on Dec. 9 in the atrium of the HoChunk Centre in downtown Sioux City. Last year, Aspen-- a 14-week-old Maltese at the time-- went to the high bidder to a tune of $16,000. This year's dog has not been revealed.

Families must apply for the Goodfellow toys with the application that is running every day in The Journal and in the Siouxland Shoppers Guide. An application can also be picked up at The Journal, 515 Pavonia St. The toys will be distributed on Dec. 10 and Dec. 16 at the warehouse directly south of the Journal building. 

A Journal reporter started Mr. Goodfellow Charities in 1914. Organizers sold the first Little Yellow Dog in 1936.

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