To the Editor:
We at Golden Opportunities extend deepest thanks and appreciation to everyone who participated in the 2016 Tag-A-Tree project, making Christmas very special for hundreds of our elderly friends and neighbors. Newtown responded generously and enthusiastically to the requests for special gifts ranging from white sneakers to a colorful bedspread to meals at favorite restaurants, as did the facilities and institutions that hosted trees. Special gratitude is extended to Laura Branchini who coordinated the project and worked tirelessly to see it to fruition. She and her “elves” (Karen Harris, Lynette Daria, Phyllis Santilli, Ruth Brassard, Susan Belanger, Merita Narel, and Charlene Calandro) collected and sorted donations, wrapped and labeled the gifts, and saw to their safe delivery. To say this dedicated team made Christmas merry would be an understatement.
We also wish to thank Paul Krueger and the entire Lions Club for the lovely donation of toothpaste for our holiday gift packets, and we tip our hats to Arline and Ed Shanley, Beth Davis, Marie Smith, Mary Kay Ellis, Nancy Taylor, and Joe Ratyna who kindly helped to assemble and deliver the packets. These festive and practical gifts brightened the holidays for more than 900 residents of elder care facilities. Appreciation is also extended to Linda Manganaro and her staff at Nunnawauk Meadows for their help in spreading joy and merriment to Newtown’s senior community this Christmas.
Monsignor Bob often says, “Everyone doing a little can make a lot happen,” and that rang true at Golden Opportunities this Christmas season. Our wish is that the generosity of the organizers, helpers, participants, and community in general be returned to them a hundred times over.
Flip and Knettie Archard, Founders
PO Box 3663, Newtown January 10, 2017