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WHAT’S HAPPENING

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Newman Salvation Army campaign

Organizers of the Newman Salvation Army kettle campaigns are seeking volunteers to staff the trademark red kettles this holiday season.

The kettle campaign will be held Dec. 7-14, with locations at Bank of the West, Chevron, JJ Liquor and Newman Food Market.

Individuals, clubs and organizations are invited to ring. Orestimba students will earn community service hours for participating.

To sign up or for more information, call Sandie Lessel, 765-2018.

Newman Christmas festivities

Organizers of Newman’s Dec. 7 Christmas festivities are currently accepting applications for craft booths and a lighted holiday parade.

The deadline for parade registration and craft booth applications is Nov. 20. Craft booth fee is $30. There is no charge for the parade.

Applications are available at the Newman Chamber of Commerce office (State Farm Insurance), 1404 Main Street.

Call 862-3200 for additional information.

Gustine Christmas celebration

Vendor applications and lighted parade entries for the upcoming Gustine Chamber of Commerce Old-Fashioned Christmas Downtown are now available.

The annual event will be held Saturday, Nov. 30, offering a full day of events.

Vendor fee is $35. Parade entry is free of charge.

For more information on vendor applications or lighted parade entries call the Gustine Chamber of Commerce, 854-6975.

Clothing, blanket drive

Veterans of Foreign Wars, Joseph G. Rose Post 7635, will host a clothing, blanket and coat drive Dec. 8-9 to benefit those experiencing homelessness.

New and clean used articles will be accepted at the Veterans Memorial Hall, 145 Fifth St., in Gustine, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. each day.

For more information, call George Martinez, 479-9936.

‘Wreaths Across America’ at local cemetery

A nationwide wreath-laying program which honors and remembers deceased veterans at the holidays  is formally coming to Hills Ferry Cemetery this year. The “Wreaths Across America” program will be held Friday morning, Dec. 13, at Hills Ferry Cemetery.

Following the formal program, volunteers will place wreaths at the graves of veterans buried in the rural West Side cemetery.

Local organizer RoseLee Hurst said community members, families, businesses and organizations can sponsor single or multiple wreaths in remembrance of veterans. Wreaths may be ordered through Nov. 14, Hurst said.

The cost is $15 per wreath.

Hills Ferry will be a “grave-specific” cemetery, she noted, meaning that sponsors can designate the grave on which they would like their wreath placed.

To sponsor one or more wreaths, or for more information, call Hurst at 681-5220.

Newman church taking part in Operation Christmas Child 

A Newman church will once again be taking part in a campaign to deliver shoe boxes packed with school supplies, items of personal necessity, clothing and toys to needy children in a number of nations around the world.

First Baptist Church of Newman will be a drop-off center for Operation Christmas Child, a project of the Samaratin’s Purse organization.

Shoe boxes may be dropped off at the church, located at 910 R St., during designated hours from Monday, Nov. 18, through Monday, Nov. 25. Hours are 4-6 p.m. Monday through Friday, Nov. 18-22; 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, Nov. 23; noon to 2 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 24; and 9-11 a.m. Monday, Nov. 25.

The church will also be hosting a shoe box packing party Sunday, Nov. 17, from 6-8 p.m. All interested community members are invited to participate.

This marks the fourth year that First Baptist Church of Newman has served as an Operation Christmas Child drop-off point for West Side communities.

Through the first three years, nearly 1,800 shoe boxes have been collected locally and distributed to children throughout Asia, Europe, Africa, Central America and South America.

In 2019, Operation Christmas Child hopes to send shoe box gifts to 11 million children in nations such as Peru, the Philippines, Rwanda and the Ukraine.

Guidelines on packing a shoe box, as well as suggested items, may be found online at samaritanspurse.org/occ.

Items such as candy, toothpaste, ware-related items such as toy guns or military figures, seeds, food, breakable items or aerosol cans should not be included in the shoe boxes.

Community members who wish to sponsor a shoe box may do so through the website. Donation is $9.

Arrangements may also be made by calling Tamara Edwards, 735-8464.

Newman branch library

The November schedule at the Newman branch library is packed with special activities.

Each Wednesday, story time will be held at 10 a.m. followed by a wee move & play session at 10:30 a.m.

A Lego derby is planned for Thursday, Nov. 14. Participants will build Lego cars and compete against one another on a race track. The fun begins at 3:30 p.m.

A Hogwarts fall party will be held Tuesday, Nov. 19, beginning at 3:30 p.m. Visitors of all ages are invited to make Harry Potter-themed crafts and enjoy activities and treats. Costumes are welcome.

The Newman branch library is located at 1305 Kern St. Call 862-2010 for more information.

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