Along with Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday, Deerfield made Saturday Giving Saturday in the Village.
Between the third annual drive through toy and food drive, a three on three basketball tournament to benefit the Deerfield High School School Chest and Christmas Tree sales at the Optimist lot, the people in the Village were all about making a difference Saturday.
Rep. Elect Brad Schneider (D-Deerfield), state Sen. Elect Julie Morrison (D-Deerfield) and Mayor Harriet Rosenthal all stopped by with toys, food or both. Two young sisters—Jane Pinsky and Becca Pinsky—showed a mature understanding of the spirit of the season.
“It’s the eighth night of Hanukkah (tonight) and on the eighth day we give to charity,” Jane and Becca said. They brought new unwrapped toys graciously received by members of the United States Marine Corps as part of the Toys for Tots program.
The meaning of the events in Deerfield Saturday had an impact on Schneider as he prepares to represent Deerfield and the rest of the 10th Congressional District in Washington when he is sworn into office Jan. 3.
“I do what I can to support my community, Deerfield, and the larger community,” Schneider said. “In this season in which most of us have the opportunity to exchange gifts with family and friends it’s important to remember not everyone is so fortunate,” Schneider said.
While a number of volunteers including six United States Marines were collecting toys for Toys for Tots along with food and sundries for the West Deerfield Township Food Pantry, a little over a mile north on Waukegan Road, Deerfield High School students were playing basketball to raise money for the School Chest.
“We’re raising money for (designated School Chest charity) LUNGevity and trying to have a good time,” Mac Levin said of the tournament. Levin organized the three on three tourney along with Jake Price and Cody Weiss.
The winning student team will play a squad of faculty and staff at 12:30 p.m. Tuesday in front of the entire school. “Tickets are $1,” DHS Dean and faculty advisor Dan Chamberlin said. The public is also invited, according to Chamberlin.
In Jewett Park, other Deerfield High School students as well as volunteers from the Deerfield Optimists and Trinity International University were selling Christmas Trees. “It’s great to help people get their Christmas Trees,” volunteer Jake Rubin, a Deerfield High School junior, said.
Profits from the sale of the trees go to scholarships given by the Optimists to high school seniors in Deerfield, according to Ed Seidman, an Optimist volunteer. “It’s been as much as $8,000,” he said. This activity has been going on more than 50 years.