HOOKSETT — Hundreds of motorcyclists loaded up with toys for children in need took part in the JoAnne Packard Memorial Toy Run on Sunday.

Bikers rode together from Concord to Hooksett, where they dropped off an assortment of toys, games, stuffed animals and other items in the 37th annual donation run for the New Hampshire Union Leader Santa Fund for the Salvation Army.

Salvation Army Capt. Mike Harper said the annual fall event helps set the tone for the upcoming holiday season.

“It’s a nice precursor event to create awareness and just get the buzz going,” Harper said. “It went really well.”

The New Hampshire Motorcyclists’ Rights Organization, which conducts the annual toy run, renamed it in memory of Packard, a longtime organizer who died shortly after the 2018 run last September.

Harper estimated up to 500 motorcycles were on the road for Sunday’s ride.

A police motorcycle escort led the convoy from Concord to HK Powersports on Hooksett Road, where bikers dropped off the donated goods and enjoyed a cookout in the parking lot. The destination had been the Union Leader building in Manchester, but was changed for logistical purposes this year.

Harper said it would be a few weeks before the Salvation Army tallies how many donations were made. He said about 1,000 items were donated last year, which provided a good start once donations started coming in for the Santa Fund as Christmas grew closer.

“I’d say it’s going to be fairly close to what we had last year,” Harper said.

This year will be the 60th for the Union Leader Santa Fund, which annually provides thousands of families each holiday season with gifts for children who would otherwise go without.