We've received a few messages regarding our barrel for collecting personal care and snack items for troops overseas.
When the original PlainTalk posting was made, back on October 17, 2007, we had the blue barrel in our atrium and it was there for several weeks. I just spoke with a representative of our local VFW. Unfortunately, so many people were leaving completely inappropriate items in the barrel that he removed it from our atrium last week. He will bring a barrel this afternoon and we will try a second time. Once again, if you want to help the troops, we have a complete list of items right here: just click, print and go shopping. This is NOT a food pantry collection - however, if you stop by the library's Christmas tree display, you will find a red barrel for the Self-Help Closet and Pantry, and appropriate, non-perishable food items can be left there. Keep in mind that items for the soldiers must be things that can be easily packed and mailed, so bulk food items and large bottles of soda are just not acceptable. Please follow the guidelines listed on our "Help the Troops" page.
In the meantime: if you have items you need to drop off for the collection, we have been told there is a blue barrel at the First Bank, corner of Lee and Ellinwood, or, bring the items to the library and just put my name on them, Karen McBride -- I will personally deliver the items to the VFW. We apologize for any inconvenience caused over the last few days.
Looking for other ways to help people during the holidays? Visit the display of Christmas trees in our lobby - you can leave "Toys for Tots," items for the Self-Help Closet and Pantry, or check out the "Mitten Tree." In a world where shopping and consumerism seem to have gotten the better of us, these are easy yet significant ways to spread joy and bring health and nourishment to others.