James Van Der Beek Surprises Texas Family with Holiday Decorations and Gifts in Heartwarming Video

Mary Honkus
·2 min read

For James Van Der Beek, the best way to spread holiday cheer is to give back to the community.

The actor, who recently moved to Texas with his family, partnered with the grocery store HEB and the Pop-Up Birthday organization to surprise one deserving family with Christmas decorations, gifts, and groceries.

"Giving back is a Texas tradition. It's part of our tradition, too, and it's something I really want to teach my kids," the father of five explains in the video of the surprise. Two of his children — Joshua, 8, and Anabel, 6 — accompany him to the store to help select toys and food to gift.

With the family in mind — a single mother named Anna who recently moved to Texas to start over with her toddler son, Dan —Van Der Beek and his little ones wander through the aisles of HEB and gather an array of items. They pick out Christmas cookie baking supplies, kitchenware, decorations, and more, but the kids really take the lead when it comes to picking out all the fun toys.

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The first thing Joshua picks out is a tube of sparkling slime. "You know what, I'm going to do his mother a favor and not get him anything with green slime," Van Der Beek decides. They choose a ton of other things and fill the cart up with toy trucks and board games like Candy Land.

Once they're through the checkout, they load all of the gifts into the back of their pick up truck and strap a fresh Christmas tree to the top before heading to surprise Anna and Dan.


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Anna is completely blown away when Van Der Beek and his children show up at her home. "Did someone order some cheer?!" the former Dawson's Creek star says as he pulls up. "I heard you guys could use some help in the cheer department so we got the cheer squad for ya."

The Van Der Beeks greet Anna and Dan as Anna holds back tears. "Thank you so much, man. It means so much to me. I'm so appreciative. This is the biggest blessing to happen," she says.

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Together they decorate Anna and Dan's apartment and fill the place with endless happiness and cheer.

"To be in the position to be able to pull up to somebody's house with a pickup truck full of stuff and make them happy is the biggest gift," Van Der Beek says.

Watch the full heartwarming video above, and to sponsor your own family like Van Der Beek did go to PopUpBirthday.org for more information.