Holiday cheer filled the air at South Haven Boys & Girls Club on Wednesday as over 50 Club members opened presents as part of the organization’s annual Christmas to Remember celebration.
Each year, the organization identifies Club members in need, and sponsors and volunteers come together to donate, shop for presents, decorate and write letters from Santa, all in an effort to give Club members a magical holiday. Instead of its typical event, held last year at the Genesis Center in Gary, Boys & Girls Clubs held ten Club-based Christmas parties over the past two weeks to keep building capacities low and ensure proper social distancing.
Boys & Girls Clubs Director of Marketing Stephanie Hamilton said the organization was committed to holding the event despite the challenges presented by COVID-19.
“Christmas to Remember is one of our favorite events, and our planning committee did a great job making sure it was possible to give our Club members an exciting night while keeping everybody safe,” Hamilton said.
In all, 312 Club members received presents. Boys & Girls Clubs president and CEO Ryan Smiley said the success of Christmas to Remember is because of the hard work and dedication of sponsors, staff, and volunteers.
“This event is really what Boys & Girls Clubs is all about. We’re lucky to have such dedicated sponsors and community members who are willing to help out and make sure our Club kids have a magical holiday,” Smiley said.
This year’s Christmas to Remember program was co-presented by Peoples Bank and Strack & Van Til. Additional sponsors include GNIAR, Computer Services, Inc., Valpo Car Company, The Hammond Group, Luxor Homes, Sheet Metal Workers Local 20, BMO Harris Bank, Regional Federal Credit Union and Community Hospital.