Wal-Mart won't host Epping community giving tree
A giving tree has been put up inside the Epping Town Hall to benefit a local gift drive to help local kids this Christmas. (JASON SCHREIBER PHOTO)
The retail giant informed volunteers from Epping Elementary School last week that they will no longer be allowed to place gift tags on a tree at the front of the store as they have for the past decade.
"It was an operational decision," she said Tuesday.
The tree has served as a place where tags could be hung with gift items needed for local children from birth to age 16 during the Christmas season.
Young said she learned about Wal-Mart's decision last week when she called to find out when the store planned to put the tree up so she could bring the tags and place them on the branches for donors to take before buying the gifts and returning them in time for Christmas.
"The bottom fell out of everything. We had many people running around here trying to figure out what we were going to do," Young said.
Young said she appreciates Wal-Mart's help and she's provided some tags for the employee tree, but added she didn't want to see the burden of providing gifts to fall on the store's workers.
"It's the people in town that wanted to buy stuff, and they wouldn't get an opportunity to do that," she said.
Young said the school's gift drive will also receive a portion of the items donated to the Brentwood and Epping fire departments' annual "Stuff the Bus" event held outside the Epping Wal-Mart last weekend.
Anyone with questions should call Young at the school at 679-8018, ext. 234.