The Lake Orion Lions Club spends each holiday season gathering and distributing holiday baskets/boxes for underprivileged residents and families.
It's a process that began weeks ago at the Lake Orion Community Schools, where students and staff from many schools, including the high school leadership class, gathered food for the drive. The work continued on Friday, when the CERC gym became a staging area.
"We get families referred to us that might need some extra help, we get a lot of calls from local people in the community," said Dave Tucker of the Lions Club. "We take the donated food, we sort it out, we package it on a per household basis."
The Lions Club supplements those donations with $15-20,000 of fresh food as well.
After fillling the boxes and the trucks on Friday, the plan was for the Lions to deliver the boxes on Saturday to the 190 family households and 85 senior households.
A number of LOCS schools contribute well beyond the donations.
A few LOHS football players were at CERC after 8 a.m. Friday setting up tables and helping move boxes and the collected food from a back room into the gym.
Just after 9:30 a.m., nearly 90 Blanche Sims Elementary fifth graders showed up to help sort food, set up boxes and write Christmas cards.
"It's just important that we can help give back, our fifth graders," said Sims teacher Kiley Kast, who helped organize the grade's participation. "Anytime we can give them the opportunity ot help others in need, help the community, they're reall giving it their all."
Waldon Middle School students arrived later in the day to pitch in as well.
There are still opportunities to help after the Lions drive deliveries are made Saturday.
"We always get called afterwards and the Lake Orion Fire Department actually delivers on Christmas Eve, so anyone we get referred to in need (later), we refer to the firemen," Tucker said.