published: Wednesday, November 28, 2012
Schools collecting Treats for Troops
By CHRISTOPHER TUFFLEY
SEBRING -- It is the perfect time of year to reach out to military members on active duty and deployed overseas this Christmas.
The Highlands County Education and Education Support Professionals associations ask the community to help them in their "Treats for Troops" drive.
"This drive is being conducted at each school and at several work sites in the school district," HCEA president Steve Picklesimer said. "It is our pleasure to collect some treats for those troop members who have family ties in our district."
Troops have a wide range of needs, from food items to shaving cream to Frisbees and AAA batteries.
For example, dry powdered drinks are very popular, especially Yoo-Hoo, Gatorade, Kool-Aid and Crystal Lite; dry soups like Ramen Noodles of Cup-of-Soup; sunflower seeds, beef-jerky and Slim Jims; tuna and chicken salad, but only those in foil packets; hard pretzels, Cheetos, Chex Mix, Wheat Thins, Ritz Crackers, gum and hard candy, which much be individually wrapped in large bags; granola bars, Power Bars, cereal bars, Cliff Bars and store bought Rice Krispie Treats. Microwave food also is welcome, like popcorn, macaroni and cheese, and Chef-Boy-R-Dee.
Our troops can use toiletry items. "Please no hotel samples," Picklesimer said. Travel-size baby wipes and deodorant, body wash, disposable razors -- or Intuition or Mach 3 types; shaving creams in tubes or shaving soap (no cans please) toothpaste, tooth brushes and dental floss, feminine hygiene products, Band-Aids, gauze pads, first aid kits, bandages and eye drops, like Visine.
Donations of entertainment or sport items are useful too. Batteries -- AA, AAA, C and 9 volt, DVD movies (new or used recent releases ), iTunes gift cards; portable CD players or headphones; pens, mechanical pencils and small note pads; game books -- like crossword, word search, math/logic and Sudoku puzzles -- board games like UNO, Othello, checkers, full or travel size; Nerf footballs, Whiffle bats and balls, Frisbees and Hackey sacks.
"We will be collecting these treats through Friday, Dec. 7.
"If anyone would like to donate to this cause, please take any items you may have to any school office and ask them to add to our collection," Picklesimer said.
The HCEA hopes the business community can help with the costs for mailing the boxes and buying international phone cards.
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