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For the week of December 13 through 19, 2000

Giving Anonymously

Trees and gift baskets aid needy

Express Staff Writer

The art of giving grows on trees in our high-desert valley.

Giving TreesAt the Valley Market, in Bellevue, a huge tree in the front of the store is covered, from midway down, with individual wish lists children have filled out and placed on the tree. The wish lists will remain up until Dec. 20. Wrapped presents should be returned to the store and placed under the tree.

The wish list items run a very wide gamut from a skateboard, Pokeman cards, Barbie dolls and lip glosses to a computer laptop for a 7-year-old, and scooters for kids of all ages.

Some items are highly practical: boots, clothes, jeans, even diapers for an 8-month-old are requested. (Chances are a parent filled out the wish list form for that child.)

Another Giving Tree is at Les Schwab in Hailey. Its annual tree is festooned with paper ornaments in the shapes of sleds and stockings, and has pretty much the same sort of items on its wish list.

One 8-year-old asked for a piano. Hey, why not?

Another was clearly from an adult: "Not a toy but an encounter with a person and their talent."

Drums, computer toys, army stuff, sleds and sports books were among the other wish list items.

The Bellevue KidShop is looking for donations to help 10 local families on Christmas with baskets of food. The KidShop asks that donors call it at 788-0931 to see what is still needed.

In Ketchum, one may either donate money to Chapter One’s annual giving tree or pick out a requested item. This is the fifth year the store will be donating books to between 300 to 400 area children. It culls its list of kids from Head Start, Idaho Department of Health and Welfare, Baldy View Apartments, and the Silver Creek Alternative School.

Chapter One’s owner, Cheryl Welch, said Starr Weekes is their "Chief Elf."

"She wraps all night long in her garage."

Chapter One delivers the wrapped books to the schools at their Christmas Parties and to the Baldy View Apartments in Ketchum on Christmas Eve.

The Toy Store in Ketchum recently dropped off five huge boxes of toys as Christmas gifts at the Advocates for Survivors of Domestic Violence center in Hailey.

There continues to be so many options and ways to give back to those less fortunate in our valley. Give yourself a gift by giving to someone else for no personal gain.


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