It’s no secret. Santa Claus is coming to town soon and many people are frenzied trying to get their shopping done before the big day arrives. While you’re out shopping, Hobbs and Eunice residents have a chance to brighten the day of a local senior citizen who may need some necessities going into the New Year and the coolest time of winter. “Santa for Seniors” is seeking gifts for senior citizens in Hobbs and Eunice like blankets, clothing, heaters and other necessities. All you have to do to participate is visit one of eight locations, grab a Santa tag and go from there.
Eunice resident Tasha Pilcher, who was born and raised in Hobbs, started Santa for Seniors last year to provide gifts to seniors who may need to keep warm. In 2016, she had “30 something seniors,” but this year is “well into the hundreds.” People interested in becoming Santa Claus for a Lea County senior may pick out a tag at a participating location, then purchase a gift, wrap it and deliver it back to the business by Dec.
18. Pilcher will pick up the gift donations and they’ll be delivered to Hobbs and Eunice seniors “no later” than Dec. 23.
“I started this in Eunice last year and we started off with one location. This year, we expanded to Hobbs and we have eight locations,” Pilcher said. “It’s been absolutely amazing. I posted on Facebook about needing another boutique, like I needed one location, and I wound up with eight locations total… Everybody’s been calling needing tags.”
Pilcher explained she saw Santa for Seniors-type events taking place in different locations up north through Facebook and wanted to bring it to Lea County.
“Our seniors are forgotten about entirely too much, especially during the holidays,” she said. “Some of them, you know, it’s the only Christmas present they’ll get and we’re trying to make it where everybody gets at least a little something.”
Hobbs Senior Center and Eunice Senior Center employees said forms were passed out to those interested in signing up for Santa for Seniors, including homebound seniors.
“We started it last year. It was her idea and I said ‘you know what? I’ll support you. We’ll do this and make it work,’” Shannon Cummins, director of the Eunice Senior Center, said. “She’s done a great job. It’s a blessing, so this is her second year and it’s already grown. She was so excited.”
Tags on the tree at Salty Frog listed items needed like warm clothes, blankets, slippers, shoes and gave short descriptions on each person like “purple is her favorite color” and “his hobby is caring for pets.” People can also find tags at Fitness Fury, Funky Flamingo, Jewel Bits, Shoe Choo Train and Truly Bedazzled in Hobbs. If you’re in Eunice, tags are available at B’s Coffee Shop and Dairy Freez.
Tyne Boerner, owner of Salty Frog, said she had someone grab four of the tags on Tuesday and take them with her. The Christmas tree at Salty Frog had many tags still available by late Wednesday morning.
“I look for something to do, usually around the holidays, and there’s not a whole lot for seniors,” she said. “There’s a lot for kids. I thought this was a little different to get involved with.”
People may contact 575-263-3255 for more information about Santa for Seniors and how to participate.