By Benjamin Joe
Many people relish the holiday season not for what’s received, whether it is a couple days off, or a few presents under a tree; for some, it’s the giving nature that really makes the winter special. That being said, some give a few dollars to the Salvation Army or visit a family member who’s down with a cold. Not everyone plans and executes a fund-drive for those in need, at least not this side of Facebook.
However, that is exactly what Paulette Cody is doing with her time this year.
“The toys and the games go to Soliday’s Bar on the corner of Niagara Falls Boulevard and Ward Road in Wheatfield,” Cody said. She is also the owner of Mario’s Pet Food Pantry, which has, in the past, supplied emergency pet food during the holidays. Now Cody is branching into even more giving. “The Christmas trees and the decorations and gloves and hats and that, can go to my address: 6969 Nash Road in Wheatfield,” she said.
Cody is calling for donations of artificial or real Christmas trees, decorations and lights. She said they will find a home somewhere that needs them.
“And Santa will come,” she said. “And it doesn’t matter whether they’re from Lackawanna, there’ll be a toy or a game for them. It’s not specifically in Wheatfield.”
Cody said she was inspired after talking to someone who said Wheatfield didn’t live up to the holiday season.
“He said, ‘There’s nothing, nothing spectacular, there’s lit up trees and different areas have them, but we have nothing!’ And I’m thinking, ‘I’ve got nothing to do but just to help him,’ and we had an informal meeting,” she said. “He wanted a spectacular Christmas, so I said, ‘Why don’t we collect all kinds of trees, see if we get 50 and give them to people?’ I would like to see them all lit up around a pavilion, because that would just look spectacular. Then the names will be drawn and they’ll be brought to the people whose names were picked.”
Cody said the hats, gloves and warmers have a home right in Niagara Falls in Art Alley where clotheslines are put out and different garments are hung up. She said she’d like to be a part of that.
“They do a clothes line between two buildings and they hang them up for homeless, or people who are cold,” Cody said. “I already bought the clothes pins. It will warm your heart to put them on the lines when the snow falls. It will be ongoing. The two women who started this years ago said it starts at winter.”
Why is Cody doing this?
“The holidays … there are a lot of people out there that are in dire straits and distressed,” she said.
Sometimes it’s as simple as that.