The Holiday Season has begun at the Chelsea Soldiers Home! During this joyous and giving time of year, many veterans groups, civic organizations and local businesses donate time and gifts to make the holidays so much brighter for the veterans who live in the agency's Dorms and the Long Term Care Facility.
The first event of this season was a gift shop sponsored by the American Legion and their Auxiliaries. Gifts are wrapped and given to veterans for themselves and to give to family members. In addition to the American Legion's Gift Shop (see attached photos), the following activities are also in the works:
- Holiday luncheon parties (consists of musical entertainment and lunch) on each ward in the Long Term Care Facility. Luncheons are sponsored by the Soldiers Home Family Council, the Sexton family and the Gloucester Amvets.
- Anthony's Catering and Banquet Hall of Malden will host a Holiday Luncheon
- Saugus VFW holds a holiday dinner and entertainment at their post.
- Eastern District Elks sponsors a holiday party that includes caroling, entertainment, dinner and $5 gifts for every veteran. They also decorate our canteen for the holidays.
- Telecom Pioneers run a holiday party and provides sandwiches, hats, gloves, scarves and toiletries for every veteran.
- Newburyport Elks host a holiday get-together and give gifts to all and run a blackjack night for the vets' entertainment.
- The local DAV Chapter distributes $5 gifts for every veteran totaling $2,500.
- DAV Post #10 gives out lovely holiday fruit baskets for every hospital resident.
- VFW Post #1 brings $5 gifts to every hospital resident that are distributed by Santa.
- The Cliftondale Congregational Church of Saugus will sing Christmas carols in each ward of the hospital followed by light snacks for all.
- VFW Auxiliary #39 of Malden hosts a holiday bingo party and distributes gift bags with items like socks, slippers, sweatshirts, and the like.
- The Mattola VFW posts sends gift cards and lottery tickets.
In addition, numbers of local school and organizations will donate clothes, books and personal grooming items, some will make visits and many will send cards. Commandant mike Resca commenting on all the generosity and kindness shown to the vets remarked, "in this season of giving, it is especially heartwarming to see so many give to those who have given so much to this country. May God bless them all!"
Early Christmas shopper is greeted by volunteers from the American Legion and the Legion Auxiliary.
Shopping got quite busy on the gift shop's first day of operation.
Volunteers wrap Christmas gifts for the Soldiers Home Residents.
This information is provided by the Soldiers' Home in Chelsea.