ELIZABETHTOWN — A flurry of generous giving too place over the first three days of the week, as folks contributed to the Bladen Journal’s annual Empty Stocking Fund.
Six gifts totaling $1,290 pushed the coffers to $1,690 thus far.
“We’ve only been collecting for a handful of days, so we’re happy with how this has started,” said W. Curt Vincent, general manager and editor of the newspaper. “We’re hoping the next two weeks will see an even bigger surge.”
Contributing so far to the Empty Stocking Fund have been:
— Classic Cruisers Car Club, $400
— Adult Sunday School class at Beth Car Presbyterian Church in Tar Heel, $300
— Anonymous, $40
— In memory of Barbara L. McKoy, $200
— Anonymous, $500
— Phillip & Debi Warwick of Elizabethtown, $200
— Clarkton Lions Club, $50
The Empty Stocking Fund is a community effort aimed at making Christmas a happier day for as many children of low-income families as possible.
Last year the effort brought in a total of $7,578 which, in the end, managed to benefit more than 150 local children for Christmas. This year’s effort has an unusual twist.
“Personally, I’m putting the number of $12,000 out there as the amount that will put me on the Bladen Journal roof for 24 hours,” Vincent added. “I’ve tried to entice the public to send me up there every year — perhaps this is the year they can do it.”
He said the 24-hour period would be from 5 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 22, to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 24.
Vincent urged individuals, businesses, church groups, school groups and civic organizations to consider supporting the Empty Stocking Fund effort with a donation of any size. The collection is now underway and will continue through Wednesday, Dec. 13.
Donations can be made by sending a check to “Empty Stocking Fun” and mailed to P.O. Box 70, Elizabethtown, N.C. 28337; or bringing a cash donation to the Bladen Journal office at 138 W. Broad St. in downtown Elizabethtown. With advance notice, a donation can also be picked up by calling 910-862-4163.
Those who donate $250 or more will have the opportunity to have a photo taken for publication in the Bladen Journal. All donations will be listed in the newspaper as they are received, and donations can be made anonymously or in memory of someone.