The Routt Catholic High School Alumni Association and the Knights of Columbus #868 of Jacksonville held their second annual event benefiting the Marine Corps Toys for Tots Campaign on Saturday.
Colleen Doyle, who serves as Routt Catholic High School Development and Enrollment Director, says that the event was expanded a little this year.
“The Alumni Association and the Knights of Columbus have kind of partnered together the last two years doing different events to bring awareness to the organization and the campaign that the Marine Corps Toys for Tots supports and represents.
Last year we just did an ugly Christmas sweater party, and this year we had the ugly Christmas sweater party mixed with Christmas movie trivia. We thought it would be a fun way for not only the Routt Alumni Association but also the entire Routt community, so even parents or just friends of the school to get together and kick off the holiday with a fun night.”
All attendees were encouraged to bring an unopened toy for the Toys for Tots bins and stay for an Ugly Sweater Contest and a Christmas Movie Trivia Night.
Doyle said that the response by the attendees was much more than they had expected.
“We had about 150 people attend the event and we asked every single person to bring at least one toy. I saw one person bring in five toys, I saw one person bring in three toys, so I know we filled up completely three Toys for Tots bins. The toys were overflowing onto the table and onto the floor, it was great, it was fantastic.”
Doyle said that although attendees were only asked to donate a toy for the event, the winning teams of the trivia contest stepped up to go the extra mile at the end of the contest with $500.00 being donated to Toys for Tots.
“The $500.00 donation actually came from the participants. The trivia night was not meant to be a monetary fundraiser for Toys for Tots, it was something that our participants brought to us. We gave out cash prizes based on the entry fees we received, and the winners said, no we want to give back. They appreciated that we were giving them the opportunity to do so. So we told them yes, if you would like to donate it back, we will give it right to the Toys for Tots campaign.
So the first team did that, and we had three cash prizes, and then all of a sudden we had two more envelopes in our hands, so there was money returned from each of our winning teams. It was a good night, with a lot of good feelings and a lot of Christmas spirit, but at the end of the day, we all know that we were there to support something a little bit bigger than ourselves.”
Doyle said that the Christmas spirit of giving is continuing in the high school, as an idea by one student aims to lift the spirits of of many in the community this holiday season.
“One of our Sophomore students, for the second year is doing a program called Hunting for Cards. She is collecting unsealed Christmas cards that are signed and made out to a general reader. And she will be delivering those to various nursing homes in both Jacksonville and the surrounding communities, and we have a collection box set up to put the cards in in the foyer of the school”
Doyle said the student presented the idea to the school as an incoming Freshman, and asked to continue the effort again this year.
If you would like to donate a card to the Hunting for Cards program, you can drop off an unsealed Christmas card to the collection box at the school. Doyle said that card givers are asked to write a note of Christmas cheer in the card for whomever may receive it.
If you can’t make it to the school, you can mail cards as long as they are unsealed in a larger envelope, to Routt High School at 500 E. College Ave. Jacksonville