For the 29th year Santa has had help delivering gifts to local Chicago area children, thanks to the efforts of Dick's Last Resort and the 18th District Community Policing Office.
Santa and his elves hosted a gift giving extravaganza at the local restaurant on December 11th; Dick's closed their doors for the event and accommodated approximately 50 children who were bused in from area schools and churches. Festive face painters made the children laugh with delight as their faces were decorated with Christmas designs. Carolers from VanderCook College of music serenaded the crowd. Also attending were members of the 18th District police force and local politicians.
Toys, school supplies & books galore!
A Community that Cares...
Each child received multiple gifts from Santa, and while they received amazing toys, their gift piles also included more practical items, like school supplies and books. In the 29 years of this event, Dick's Last Resort has spent more than $100,000 on gifts for Chicago area children.
“These are children who probably would not be getting much for Christmas,” said David Swann, regional manager of Dick’s Last Resort, “and in these challenging economic times, we wanted to provide an extraordinary afternoon.”
Ron Bockstahler, CEO of Amata Law Office Suites, added, “It’s a blessing and a privilege to assist the police and Dick’s Last Resort in providing gifts to these children. Dick’s has been helping the community for many years and with all the turmoil in our world, it’s heartwarming to know Chicago has corporate citizens that care about our children.”
And an Event Children Look Forward Too
The adults aren't the only ones who appreciate being able to participate in this yearly tradition. This holiday event is an staple in the community and children are excited when they learn they are attending. Professor Robert Sinclair, Ph.D. Director of Choral Activities at VanderCook College of music said, "Having our students participate in this event is very meaningful for them. They so enjoy getting the children up, singing, dancing and laughing. We look forward to participating every year."
The children were chosen by community volunteers and school officials in conjunction with the 18th District Community Policing Office, which is led by Sgt. Chris Schenk.
Taking Time to Educate
Local politicians and the police department use this event to educate children as well. Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White, who has attended the party for the last 17 years, spoke to the children this year about the importance of staying in school and not getting involved with gangs.
Also in attendance were 42nd Ward Alderman Brendan Reilly and 18th District Police Commander Daniel O’Shea. Officer Ramona Stovall assisted with the party. The event is organized every year by Chicago civic leader Kathy Posner, a member of the 18th District Community Policing District Advisory Council (DAC.)
Each year Amata Law Office suites staff head down to Dick's Law resort to help wrap gifts. Thank you to our Amata admin Kara Fuss and receptionists Mirel Robles and Erica Morgan for your time and generous spirit this holiday season.