The Surface Creek community showed the real spirit of its Christmas holiday observance as more than 200 holiday gift dinner boxes prepared by volunteers were made available for distribution.
Vehicles lined up at the Surface Creek Community Services food bank and some 30 volunteers who had worked to assemble and package the holiday feast fixings carried the boxes filled with food and placed them into trunks, pickup beds, and back seats of the waiting vehicles.
The annual Christmas tradition of the free gift boxes has been a holiday fixture in the community for over a decade, event organizers told the DCI.
Donations of money, of food, and more were put to good use by the SCCS volunteers. The food bank works in a partnership understanding with Food Bank of the Rockies, said Donna Christenson, a volunteer. For example, Food Bank of the Rockies provided turkeys that were included in some of the gift boxes for just ten cents per pound, she said. For gift boxes that did not include a turkey, there was a gift certificate for making a meat purchase of the family's choice.
Another local food retailer, Safeway, is a generous donor to the SCCS program, she added.
Other items in the gift dinner boxes this year included a variety of fresh and canned vegetables, butter, various types of crackers, evaporated milk, rolls, chocolate for cooking and more. Other food items like cake mixes were distributed among the gift boxes, and every effort was made to ensure that there was an equivalent amount of food and nutrition in each of the gift boxes that were given out.
There were many fresh pies for distribution, and also pie crusts and canned pumpkin for others to do their own home holiday baking.
Santa Claus was on hand at the event, giving out free candy canes to the box recipients as they waited for volunteers to load their packages.