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Local clubs, organizations ready for the giving season

By: Martha Garcia, Colfax Record Editor
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After taking some time off to observe Thanksgiving Day today, all the volunteers from a number of organizations and service clubs will get back to planning holiday events coming up Saturday, Dec. 8.

The day begins with the 33rd Annual Colfax Christmas Project, the food and toy distribution program sponsored by Soroptimist International of Colfax. From 9 a.m. to noon, at the Sierra Vista Community Center, Soroptimists will brighten the holidays for children, the elderly and shut-ins by distributing food baskets that contain ingredients for a holiday meal, plus additional food items for use throughout the season. Over 250 needy families who live from Applegate to Soda Springs are expected to be helped this year.

While they wait to receive their food baskets, Soroptimists will also serve families fresh-baked cookies and milk.

Children, up to age 17, in families served by the Christmas Project will also receive toys and gifts. The public can participate in this toy effort by selecting a name of a child from one of the “Angel Trees” placed throughout town and buy an appropriate holiday gift for that child. Select a name and return the gift to one of the trees placed at the Colfax Library, Colfax High School, Marson’s, US Bank, Studio Z Zumba, Colfax Farm and Country Store, Basement Wines/Main Street Pizza, Colfax Mini Storage, Buzz Thru Joes, and Dine N Dash Café.

Community members can also make a monetary donation by making checks payable to Soroptimist International of Colfax and mailing them to Colfax Christmas Project 2012, PO Box 475, Colfax, CA 95713.

Applications to receive food and toys through the Christmas Project are available at Marson’s, Buzz Thru Joe’s and the Colfax Record office.

Members of the Colfax Lioness Club are conducting a coat drive in order to give away coats and hand-knit hats and scarves during the Christmas Project. Club member Valerie Sussek said there is a need for gently used coats for men, women and children, and for “anything warm like sweatshirts or hooded sweat shirts. … Please check your closets – we will be delighted to pick them up.” However, the club has already received, “many, many hats, scarves and gloves donated by senior citizens who have knitted them,” she said. Call Sussek at 346-8443 to have the outerwear picked up.

Once they’ve finished the food and toy distribution, the Soroptimists will shift gears to open their 25th Annual Old Fashioned Soup Kitchen from 4:30 to 7 p.m., also at the Sierra Vista Community Center. The dinner includes “all-you-can-eat” homemade soup served with garlic bread. Proceeds help fund community projects, including the Christmas Project. Soup Kitchen tickets, at the door, are $8 for adults, $6 for children 6-17, and free for 5 and under. Tickets purchased prior to Dec. 8 are $7 and $5 and available at Marson’s, Buzz Thru Joe’s, Colfax Record.

Winterfest activities start downtown at 4 p.m., when vendors – including the Lioness who will offer hot cider – open their booths and continue until 9 p.m., said Frank Klein, Colfax Area Chamber of Commerce president. The Chamber is overseeing Winterfest activities, following the dissolution of Colfax Pride, the previous event organizer.

“We – the Chamber – were approached by a few service clubs,” to take over the Winterfest, “… and quite a few people stepped up to make it work,” Klein said.

The Colfax Lions Winterfest Light Parade starts at 6:30 p.m. Check-in is at the staging area on N. Main Street between School Street and Highway 174. Entries are still being accepted. To participate in the parade, call Ernie Steiner at 637-5131 or Tim Luckinbill at 272-7131.

Klein said the Christmas tree will be lit after the Light Parade ends.

Other Winterfest activities will include a visit by Santa Claus, a live nativity at the Lot of Art Park, and “roving” yuletide caroling by the Colfax High School Choir.