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Stepping up

It's the time of year when most of us are thinking of the gifts we can buy for one another. And it is also the time when we are besieged with hard-luck stories and the need for donations. 

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Levy County and the Tri-County Area has its share of them. But then there are people who step forward to make this season bright and all of us proud.

When the Guardian ad litem program needed help making Christmas for children in its care, Walgreens in Chiefland stepped up to become a collection point and to accept donations from groups like the Chiefland Rotary. The club presented a check ASAP.

The same club also held a dove/clay shoot and raised several thousand dollars that will be distributed to several groups this month. Buck Mitchell, who hosts the hunt every year, deserves an “Attaboy!” for donating much to this fundraiser every year. Mitchell provides more than just a field for shoot enthusiasts and puts on quite a lunch as well. 

Chiefland's Suwannee Valley Rotary heard about the large increase in families needing Thanksgiving baskets from Tri-County Community Outreach and that the non-profit usually does not hand out Christmas baskets. The Rotarians embraced the need and will be gathering the ingredients for Christmas dinner baskets for Community Outreach. 

Speaking of food drives, did you see where the new Suncoast Schools Federal Credit Union collected 611 cans at its opening for Community Outreach? They had a bunch of packages of non-perishable foods collected as well. 

The students at Chiefland High School collected numerous boxes of non-perishable goods as well in the Student Government Association food drive. One woman, after learning of the school food drive, brought in several bags to donate anonymously. 

But topping them all, the 2011 Business of the Year, Capital City Bank, which presented a $2,000 check to the Tri-County Community Outreach. It's obvious that the local bankers care.

Drummond Community Bank, taking a cue from its name, opened its doors, corralled Chiefland's best bakers for donations and recently turned the lobby into a “Sweets Shop” to raise money for Haven Hospice. We may all be fat, but we're happy that Haven benefits.

But the one who warms my heart the most is Karen Driggers, who with her Second Impressions Shop in Chiefland, the help of Skinny Wallet in Chiefland and Second Time's a Charm in Bronson has organized a toy drive for Levy County children left out in the cold this holiday when Toys for Tots folded its tent in our county.

The folks at these three shops are collecting items and donations and Driggers reported this week that with the community's contributions more children will be helped than originally anticipated. 

The Chiefland Citizen would like to salute Driggers and the fellow businesswomen and businessmen for taking on all these projects and making better holidays possible in the Chiefland area. 

Lou Elliott Jones is editor of the Chiefland Citizen and Cedar Key Beacon. Contact her at editor@chieflandcitizen.com.