Gateway: Living

Lions’ Giving Tree program offers chance to bring holiday cheer to needy children

A tag is seen on a Giving Tree at the Galaxy Uptown Theatre in Gig Harbor on November 17, 2016. Stores around Gig Harbor will be displaying giving trees with tags containing for people to pick up in order to purchase gifts for a child in need.
A tag is seen on a Giving Tree at the Galaxy Uptown Theatre in Gig Harbor on November 17, 2016. Stores around Gig Harbor will be displaying giving trees with tags containing for people to pick up in order to purchase gifts for a child in need. Staff file

Gig Harbor is a community that loves to give, especially when it means improving the life of a child. Have you noticed the Christmas Giving Trees in banks and businesses all over the harbor?

Our local Lions Club has supplied gift tags for the fourth year in a row to 48 locations from Gig Harbor North all through the Finholm and downtown districts, many stores in Uptown, and several in between. The gifts are collected by the local Cheney Family Boys & Girls Club and the Peninsula Fish food bank and distributed to children that otherwise wouldn’t have much under their tree.

Last year more than 1,700 gifts were donated.

The Giving Tree program was developed four years ago by Bob Moore, a now-retired Lion that coordinated businesses with agencies that could pick up the gifts and make sure they were given to kids that could use some holiday cheer. In his absence, four other members of the Lions Club took on the challenge of getting the job done using Moore’s notes and information.

Thanks to help from Sharon Kirry, Elaine Morales and Sue Schmidt, Ruth Peterson was able to coordinate the project and see it to completion.

How can people participate? Simply find a tag at one of the following businesses, purchase the gift and bring it back unwrapped before Dec. 19.

You could personally be responsible for a child’s big smile on Christmas morning. Doesn’t that make your heart sing?

Participating businesses include: 7 Seas, A Prima Salon, Allovus Creative Partnership, Amadora Salon, Bank of America, Beach Basket Christmas Shop, Ben & Jerry’s, Birdnest Gallery & Framing, Charlie Barnes Babies, Chase Bank, Chico’s, Columbia Bank (both locations), Copy It-Mail It, Cutter’s Point Coffee/Uptown, Devoted Kiss Café, Dolly Mama and Dolly Mama Too, Edge Pilates, For the Love of Spice, Foundry, Frankie’s, Galaxy Theatre, Gameday Sports, Harbor History Museum, Heritage Bank, Heritage Distilling, Kelly’s Café, Kitsap Bank (both locations), Kitsap Credit Union, Marketplace Grille, Massage Envy, Morso, No Dearth of Books, Peninsula Retirement, ProSport & Spine, Rainy Day Yarns, Sea Hags, Sound Credit Union/Pt Fosdick, Sports Clips, The Keeping Room, Tickled Pink, Timberland Bank, Van der Veen Jewelers, Waters Edge Gallery, Weathered Cottage, Wild Birds Unlimited and Williams Flower & Gifts.

For business who would like to participate next year, email lionruthpeterson@yahoo.com.

The local Lions Club, serving the community since 1931, loves kids. Scholarships are given to a senior from each local high school, dictionaries to third grade students, as well as programs to help seniors and veterans. Vision has always been a high priority for Lions, financially helping those who can’t afford eyeglasses as well as recycling donated glasses. If you would like to see more about the local Lions Club, check out their website at gigharborlions.org.

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