The following are fundraisers, donations and charitable events happening in the Midlands. Email your information about good deeds to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 402-444-1040.
Playing Santa: For more than five decades, volunteers from the Omaha District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers have taken on the role of Santa and his elves to bring holiday cheer and presents to the less fortunate in the Omaha area. This year the employees will be at the Douglas County Health Center on Friday and the Glenwood (Iowa) Resource Center on Dec. 13. At both events the group will have presents for the patients and clients, sing carols and throw a party.
Kickboxing: All six of the Farrell's eXtreme Bodyshaping locations in the Omaha metropolitan area have teamed up to kickbox for 24 hours to show support and give the community a chance to support Open Door Mission. The Kick-a-Thon will run from 5 p.m. Friday to 5 p.m. Saturday at the Farrell's at 76th and Dodge Streets. Donations of nonperishable food or cash will be accepted.
Toys galore: Give the gift of a teddy bear hug to a child this holiday season by donating a toy to the Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots. Visit any Build-A-Bear Workshop store location between Friday and Dec. 9 to drop off a new, unwrapped toy for Toys for Tots. You also can make and purchase a furry friend to donate to the toy drive at the store. There is a store at Oak View Mall.
More syrup, please: The Millard Lions Club will host its annual pancake feed from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. Saturday at St. Paul Lutheran Church, 133rd Street and Millard Avenue. Money collected is used to support programs and services for people who are blind or visually impaired and for sight conservation.
Any with frosting? The Friends of the Springfield Memorial Library will hold its annual Holiday Cookie Walk from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday at the library, 665 Main St. in Springfield. Small bags of cookies will sell for $6 and large bags for $10.
Brunch, boutique: The University of Nebraska at Omaha's Women's Club will host its Brunch & Boutique from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday in the Mammel Hall Atrium, 6708 Pine St. The brunch buffet will be open 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at $10 a person. RSVP to email@example.com . Proceeds will go to the UNOWC Scholarship Fund.
Bless the beasts: Hooves & Paws Rescue of Glenwood, Iowa, will have a 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. fundraiser Saturday at Pizza Ranch, 3505 Metro Drive in Council Bluffs. Modern Woodmen of America is sponsoring the fundraiser. Make a $6 donation to Hooves & Paws and receive a $3-off coupon or make a $20 donation to receive three $3-off coupons toward your dinner. Donations can be made at hoovespaws.org via PayPal (mark the donation “Pizza Ranch Event”) or by check (mark it “Pizza Ranch Event”). Checks should be mailed to Hooves & Paws Rescue, 27821 Highway 34, Glenwood, IA 51534. Checks should be payable to Hooves & Paws Rescue of the Heartland. Coupons will be given out at Pizza Ranch on the night of the event.
Benefit concert: The Omaha Men's Barbershop chorus, the Sarpy County Men's Barbershop chorus and the Acappella Omaha Chapter of Sweet Adelines International chorus will combine to perform a benefit Christmas concert for the Salvation Army. The concert will begin at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at First Covenant Church, 201 N. 90th St. Admission is free. A goodwill offering will be collected and donated to the Salvation Army for use in local communities.
At the southeast precinct: The Omaha Police Department's southeast precinct will have its 11th annual Santa at the Southeast Precinct on Dec. 16. New toys are needed for distribution that day. The toys are for ages 3 to 11, and the value of the toy can be from $5 to $10. Toys will be collected from 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. Saturday at Millennium Hall on 23rd and N Streets. More than 20 Latino bands will play in this annual Toy Dance. Doors will open at 5 p.m. Admission is a $10 value toy or $10. Toys also will be collected from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. Dec. 14 at La Plaza de la Raza at 24th and N Streets. Toys for donation also can be dropped off from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays at the southeast precinct, 25th and Vinton Streets.
Be an angel: The Gretna Optimist Club and Pinnacle Bank are sponsoring the Optimist Angel Tree, located in the bank lobby. The tree is up and decorated with angels that represent children in need in the Gretna area. Those selecting an angel from the tree are asked to purchase a $20 to $25 gender appropriate gift for the child and return the wrapped package with the ornament attached to the bank no later than Dec. 12.
Which sweater to wear? Who says running can’t be fun? The Ugly Sweater Run on Dec. 16 will offer an “ugly”-saturated, fun experience for runners and walkers of all ages. Rules for the Ugly Sweater Run are simple: Anyone can participate, the dress code is an ugly sweater and every runner should bring a new toy to donate to Toys for Tots after the race. The Ugly Sweater Run will kick off at 11 a.m. at the CenturyLink Center Omaha. Register at theuglysweaterrun.com.
A new home: Wag, a natural pet food and supply store in downtown Omaha, is helping rescue group Omaha Wags to Riches find foster or permanent homes for homeless dogs, largely from puppy mills. The campaign is called Home for the Holidays. Wags to Riches has about 20 dogs that need foster homes. Wag will offer space in its store at 1320 Mike Fahey St. for Wags to Riches to showcase available dogs. People interested in adopting or fostering these dogs should come in to meet the dogs and talk with the volunteers.
Wag also will have a professional photographer in the store from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday to take pictures of customer's pets with Santa. Customers can get a photo for a $5 donation to Wags to Riches. A Christmas tree will hold suggestions for items the group needs. Wag will offer a 20 percent discount on any item purchased at the store to donate to the rescue group.
Donations welcome: Catnip and Tails Inc., a cat rescue group, is now a licensed 501(c)(3) nonprofit. Donations of money, food or litter can be made by contacting Tina at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Two gifts: Teresa Hildreth, who runs the food pantry at Council Bluffs’ First Baptist Church, described two recent donations as a “Christmas miracle.” On Thursday Nov. 29 she received money during a planned check presentation, but a second, unscheduled check also was donated. Members of the Council Bluffs Building Trades Association gave Hildreth $500 for food and necessities to help the needy. One of the group’s members, Paula Danker, then presented a second $250 check from her real estate company, the Danker Team.
Plenty to read: Midwest International Trade Association members along with MainfreightUSA Book Program on Tuesday Nov. 27 donated more than 18,000 new books to the Open Door Mission’s Lydia House. This is the 12th year MITA has joined with the MainfreightUSA Book Program to donate books to Lydia House.
An end to polio: The Chet and Dottie Bowman family of Kearney, Neb., has donated $25,000 to the Rotary PolioPlus effort, which is working to eradicate polio worldwide. The gift was presented at a recent meeting of the Noon Rotary Club of Kearney.
Special thanks: Two area residents have received a special thank you for their contributions to the community. Angie Cummings of Council Bluffs and Kelli Baltzell of Omaha were selected to receive free fuel from Tanks of Thanks, a program that rewards people who do good deeds to help make their community a little bit better. Cummings was nominated for volunteering in the community and opening her home to her friends. Baltzell was nominated for her service as a volunteer at the Council Bluffs Animal Shelter. Each received a $50 Tanks of Thanks gift card redeemable at Cenex locations. To nominate someone, visit TanksofThanks.com and briefly describe why someone deserves a Tank of Thanks.
Compiled by Sue Story Truax with World-Herald News Service