The 59th annual Children’s Shopping Tour took place Saturday, December 4, with 172 family members being served including 38 children who participated in the Tour, according to ReDonn Woods, General Chair.
“This year was a success,“ Woods said. “We were blessed to have so much support from the Pampa community to help these children and their families. We look forward to next year.”
Rev. A. J. Taylor of the Pampa Kiwanis Club headed a group who registered the 145 volunteers who helped take the children shopping, wrapping their gifts, preparing lunch for the children to take to their families and leading the children in singing Christmas carols and other aspects of the Tour. Kiwanian Jana Snider recruited the volunteers.
Optimist President Kevin Davis and his crew prepared 300 hamburgers that fed volunteers and were sent home with the children for their families to enjoy. Whitney David was in charge of the wrapping party and the wrapping of 1150 gifts the children bought for members of their families and the chaperones bought for the children.
Tralee Crisis Center with Renita Cortez as its chair provided donuts, orange juice, milk and coffee for volunteers to munch on while Woods was providing the volunteers with an orientation about the Tour. Tanner Davis organized a group of teachers to make sure the children did not go over their budget and to mark out bar codes so that the gifts could not be exchanged except for sizes or similar merchandise.
Chrissie Silva and the Catholic Youth lead the children in singing Christmas carols. Josh Clinton, the Youth Minister of the First Baptist Church explained the “Reason for the Season” by telling the children that Jesus’ birth was first announced to shepherds, who were the lowest members of Jewish society at the time of Jesus birth and later to the three wise men who were highly educated and wealthy to show the world that He came for everybody.
Dr. Mark Ford, Jr. representing the Gideon Society handed out copies of the New Testament in English and Spanish.
“One of the volunteers asked a child what he wanted for Christmas,” Woods commented. “He answered, ‘This is not about me. It’s about my family.’” She continued, “We wanted the children to realize that Christmas is about giving. This response would indicate that the children understood what Christmas is really about—giving not getting.”
Members of the Steering Committee included Laycee Johnson, the Altrusa Chair, Amy Crain from Pampa Regional Medical Center, Cortnie Patterson of the Pampa Chamber of Commerce, Jana Gregory of the Pampa United Way, Delma Sanchez of St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church and Richard Stowers and John Warner, Co-Treasurers.
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