Nicole Zollinger hangs tags with the gender and the age of the children on the Angel Tree at the Smithfield Community Recreation Center on Monday, Oct. 1, 2021.

SMITHFIELD – The Greater Smithfield Chamber of Commerce put out their Angel Tree and hung hundreds of tags on it Monday at the Smithfield Recreation Center. The tree is covered with tags with names and ages of children who would not have much of a Christmas without help.

Merrett Falor hangs tags on the Angel Tree at the Smithfield Community Recreation Center on Monday, Oct. 1, 2021.

There is a second tree at Firehouse Pizzeria located at 33 E. 600 S. in Smithfield.

“We are a small Chamber of Commerce in Smithfield, but we have a lot of generous people that help our Angel Tree program,” said Rhonda Weight, the event coordinator for the organization. “All of the money we raise goes to help people in the community that could bless families during Christmas.”

They expect the tags on the tree to be gone in a few weeks and they will replace the tags on it before they deliver the presents.

The organization checks with schools, churches and community officials to find people that might need a leg up for Christmas. Besides giving children gifts they also find families that need help with utility bills.

“The chamber is also preparing to host their 15th annual Night of Giving charity event on December 4th,” she said, “It will be held at Sky View High School and we have a raffle, games and then after we have an auctioneer come and we auction off items for Christmas.”

Volunteers have begun their work preparing for the event. Organizers have discovered that the pandemic has created a greater need for families around Cache Valley for help. With a theme of “Let it Snow” the group wants to raise at least $25,000 this year.

Tags gives the gender and age of the child before it is hung on the Angel Tree at the Smithfield Community Recreation Center on Monday, Oct. 1, 2021.

“Last year it was different because of the pandemic,” Wright said. “We usually help over 180 children. Some are in the same family and it usually ends up being 30 to 40 families.”

The Chamber checks to make sure the families are not on the Sub for Santa or another charity list.

“We decided to get the word out earlier this year to people in the community.”

The tickets are on sale and they have been putting posters around town.

“The more people that hear about what we are doing the more donations we hope to receive,” Wright said. “We are trying new ideas to make it a more fun event.”

The chamber has added a new online store option to the event that will be available this year. Donors can sponsor a child, purchase a holiday meal for a family, or make a general donation.

“Participation and support for the event can be done in several ways this year,” she said. “Donating a gift package, decorated Christmas tree, toy package, or anything that would help to bring in money for the auction or raffle; making a monetary donation by check, credit card or Venmo at @Smithfield-Chamber.”

Tickets for the event can be purchased for individuals or participants can reserve a table. Anyone can buy from the auction, raffle, or the Golden Ticket candy bar game. They can also purchase a sponsorship, including event tickets, Golden Ticket candy bars, raffle tickets, and special recognition during the evening; or, making a donation through the new online store.

Rhonda Wright Merrett Falor and Nicole Zollinger assembled the Angel Tree at the Smithfield Community Recreation Center on Monday, Oct. 1, 2021.

Organizers and volunteers hope individuals and businesses around Cache Valley will join with them as they bring the joy of Christmas to families throughout the community.

Nicole Zollinger, the executive director of the Smithfield Chamber, said their goal is to make sure that no child goes without Christmas.

More information can be provided by contacting Nicole Zollinger at (510) 709-9251 or Rhonda Wright at (435) 512-0536.

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