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Senior center allows children to ‘shop’ for parents’ gifts


PEPPERELL — While gift donations for children around the holiday season are a common occurrence, this year the Pepperell Senior Center is offering a different opportunity — allowing children to pick out donated gifts for their parents.

From 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 14, families will be able to come in for music, food and the chance for children to ‘shop’ for gifts for their parents, with the help of seniors.

“We’re hoping to create a really warm, inviting atmosphere. We want it to be joyful, and for them to feel less stress,” said Susan McCarthy, the senior center’s activities coordinator.

Some of the gifts are being donated by Town Hall employees, while seniors are providing hand-knit items.

“We have five boxes of knitted scarves from our seniors. They are absolutely beautiful and we have hand-knit mittens and hats for men and women,” McCarthy said.

A lunch of grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup will be available for $2.50, and musical group Back to the Garden will provide entertainment.

Seniors will also be helping children to make hand-made Christmas cards.

The Senior Center advertised the first-time event through Pepperell Aid from Community to Home Outreach, the town’s food pantry, with the hopes of attracting families in need.

McCarthy said that she hopes parents bring their children to pick out presents, as they, too, are deserving of holiday gifts.

“It’s such an emotional thing to need and I feel like it will be hard for some parents to come because it’s a present for themselves. I hope they feel that they are worthy of getting a gift,” McCarthy said.

Those interested in participating can simply attend on Saturday. No registration is required.

“I think kids want to give their parents a present, and I think having seniors to help them is great. I hope we get a good turnout. It’s a great time of year to give back,” McCarthy said.

Follow Chelsea Feinstein on Twitter and Tout @CEFeinstein.