Giving Tree forms due, tree up Nov. 18

For a quarter of a century, the Giving Tree has helped to make the holidays a little brighter for Clear Lake area families.  We are pleased to report that there is already strong interest by families, businesses and other groups interested in choosing ornaments from The Giving Tree and purchasing anonymous gifts for local families.

The 26th annual Giving Tree will be displayed in the Mirror-Reporter office starting Wednesday, Nov. 18.

Sign-up forms for the Giving Tree have already been distributed in the Clear Lake School District.  They were also sent home with those attending Head Start and Lake Town Charlie Brown.  If your child did not receive a sign-up form, contact Sally Duesenberg at Clear Lake Schools, 357-5288.

In 2014, the tree featured approximately 202 ornaments representing the wishes of local children.  And just like it always has, the community rose to the challenge of seeing that each of those ornaments was chosen.

The Clear Lake School District is in charge of distributing, as well as processing the forms filled out by parents specifying needs they have for their children. The school district then provides the Mirror-Reporter with ornaments representing the needs of each child.  Other ornaments will list the size of a family requesting a food gift card.

Again this year, the Giving Tree is asking that gifts of food be made with a gift card.  The card may be presented with a small treat, but the food gift must be in gift card form, rather than boxes of non-perishable items.  The change was necessitated by the overwhelming amount of food given in the past, as well as the challenge of making timely deliveries to the large number of recipients.

This year gifts must be brought to the Mirror-Reporter office by Wednesday, Dec. 16.

In the 25 years that the Mirror-Reporter has housed the tree, needs have never been left unmet.  In fact, those choosing ornaments often remark that they had more fun shopping for someone they didn’t know than someone they did.  They put time into thinking about their gifts, had fun wrapping them and like to think about how excited a child might be to open their presents on Christmas Day.

Questions regarding sign-up for the Giving Tree should be directed to Sally Duesenberg at Clear Lake Schools, 641-357-5288.  Those with questions about purchasing gifts or food for families, or wishing to make a donation which will be dedicated to the Giving Tree, should contact Marianne Morf at the Clear Lake Mirror-Reporter, 357-2131.

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