It seems tenants of the graciously restored turn-of-the-century Fernwell Building at 505 W. Riverside are every bit as well-favored as the building itself.
Present-day renters must rival the original tenants in the art of stately sensibilities.
Which is to say, it’s a darn good group at the Fernwell Building.
“Over the past several years, the Fernwell Building, with the full encouragement of its tenants, has forgone the giving of Christmas gifts to its tenants and instead made a gift to the (Spokesman-Review) Christmas Fund,” wrote “Your Friends at the Fernwell.”
Last year, the owners encouraged their renters to join with them in supporting the fund, and “once again, they have responded splendidly,” the letter read.
Fernwell friends - management and tenants alike - contributed a combined $7,325.
“Our own special thanks to White-Runkle Associates and their enthusiastic employees for their outstanding generosity,” the letter continued. “All of us at the Fernwell Building are thankful for all we have and are pleased to share with those less fortunate.”
Their donation will help scores of families have happier holidays through the Christmas Fund.
The daily total Wednesday was $42,746, for a year-to-date sum of $293,286.39 toward the $400,000 goal.
That leaves “only” $106,714 to raise before Christmas - now less than a week away.
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas may really be a joyous time for everyone - our have-nots as well as our haves. But we can’t sit back, heave a sigh of relief and smile at the possibilities - and then let others make it happen.
The Christmas Fund is truly a united effort between businesses and residents. It’s exhilarating to read the notes accompanying checks of all sizes and realize how our contributors truly care that everyone in our community enjoy the holidays.
Others determined to see the $400,000 goal met include an anonymous donor who contributed $3,000.
The management and shareholders of ICM Asset Management, Inc., 601 W. Main, donated $2,000 to the cause because they “believe that contributing to the efforts of various organizations, locally and nationally, is the best way to share our good fortune with thousands who are less fortunate … Please accept the enclosed contribution with our good wishes. We hope it helps in some small way to ease the burdens of the many recipients whom you serve.”
An example of selflessness are the employees and management at Excell Foods, Ranch Market, Inc., with its headquarters at 1220 N. Mullan Road.
“Thanks again,” wrote Terry Sparrow, “for the wonderful service you provide our community every year. With the help of The Spokesman-Review and their many volunteer workers, hopefully all those in need can share in a happy holiday season.”
A check for $2,500 accompanied the letter from employees and management staff.
The Welch Foundation, longtime friends of the Christmas Fund, donated $2,000 with thanks “for your contribution of operating this fund at no cost to its recipients,” wrote Fred Wilson.
A gift of $1,500 came from Mrs. Walter Toly, 1224 W. Riverside. There was an anonymous donation of $1,500, with thanks for the opportunity to help others.
The company and staff at Napa Distribution Center, Spokane, gave a matched amount of $1,451; the R.A. Pearson Company, 8120 W. Sunset Highway, gave $1,000, as did an anonymous donor.
Lilac City Decorators, 220 E. Augusta, gave $750, with this note: “On behalf of our staff and crew, we are privileged to again share our good fortune so others may enjoy a brighter holiday season.”
Pathology Associates Medical Laboratories, Spokane, gathered contributions of $355 from staff and management, which was then matched by the company for a combined $710. An accompanying note read: “We hope this will help you in your efforts to make the holidays a little brighter for those less fortunate than ourselves.”
Gifts of $500 came from Grogan’s Construction, Newman Lake; Gifford Consultants, Inc., 2020 E. Springfield; Bill and Bruce Barany of The General Store, 2424 N. Division; Winston & Cashatt law firm, 1900 Seafirst Financial Center; Mr. and Mrs. Carl E. Disney, Liberty Lake, in memory of their son, Christopher L. Disney; and two anonymous donors.
White Rose Chapter 230, Order of Eastern Star, contributed $300, as did Diane Findlay, 1207 W. Cherrywood; John Scherer & Associates, Spokane; Yadon Construction Specialties, Inc., 202 N. Napa; H.L. Hoffman, 451 W. Shoshone; and the Fiess family in Edwall. Kim Kramarz, Spokane, donated $150 which was matched by her employer for a total of $300.
Employees of Spokane Guilds’ School and Neuromuscular Center, 2118 W. Garland, contributed $270 rather than have their annual gift exchange. George J. Dick, 7904 E. Gunning, gave $250, as did Mr. and Mrs. Norm Fredekind, 3223 S. Howard, and David and Beth Britt, 635 E. 17th.
One anonymous donation of $220 was received.
Donating $200 was the Krazy 8’s Family Square Dance Club, in lieu of its “usual traditional, seemingly meaningless ornament exchange.”
David Crouse, Veradale, also donated $200, as did Lorna Stevenson, 2615 E. Foxwood Drive; Spokane Credit Food Group; The Bayne Company, Spokane; Ellen Miller, Cheney; Bob and Donna Boyd, 3311 S. Manito Blvd., “in gratitude for our mothers, Vivian and Mona,” and two anonymous donors, one with this note: “May God bless those who are struggling this Christmas season.”
The Queen Bees Bowling League scored a strike with its $175 gift; L&M; Truck Sales, Inc., 4001 E. Boone, matched another employee’s contribution of $80 to bring the company’s combined total of $1,961.
“I wish there were a way to say on paper how proud I am of the efforts may by the employees of L&M; to bring joy and good cheer to those less fortunate than they,” wrote Sally Littell, chief executive officer. “This is a tremendous group of people and a great cause for which they have chosen to work.”
The medical clinic of Spokane Oncology Hematology, 104 W. Fifth, “decided to donate our gift money to helpful causes,” and contributed $150. Sharon Arger, Veradale, also gave $150, as did the Haefele family, 7312 N. Tucannon; Margaret Isaak, 3715 N. Cannon, “in memory of my husband Vic Isaak, my mother Elizabeth Scott, my daughter Ann Elizabeth Fredberg, and my sister Teki Slater.
W.E. Taylor, 1224 W. Riverside, gave $150 in memory of Dale Taylor and grandson Tucker Taylor of Sandpoint; W.O.W. Pollution Control Systems, Otis Orchards, also gave $150; as did two anonymous donors, one in memory of Bea Hills, “to whom Christmas was always so special.”
Dean and Loretta Lydig, 14909 N. Hazard, gave $125. Contributions of $100 came from Barry and Carole Jones, 1914 E. 25th, “in loving memory of my mother, Josephine Rowan”; Mike and Carole Cossette, Newman Lake; Dulcie Sherve, in memory of her mother Barbara and grandmother Esther.
An anonymous family of five, as it’s been for more than 30 years, gave $100. So did Kevin and Helen Paulson, 10321 E. Bigelow Gulch; Bill Bell, 12024 E. 20th; Mrs. R.A. Pearson, 1305 E. Rockwood; Covenant Women Ministries of First Covenant Church, 212 S. Division; Mildred Hamilton, 2645 E. Foxwood; Ralph Beebe, 1208 W. 20; and Fred Allen, 628 W. 17th.
Other $100 gifts came from Harry and Donna Fuhs, 5220 S. Perry; a Spokane donor identified only as Vern; Mark and Terry Hoover, 3430 S. Jefferson; Allied Systems, 9116 E. Sprague; Vern and Lorraine Bromling, 224 N. Moffitt; Harold and Doloris Glasgow, 6012 N. Myrtle; John Archambeault, 1207 E. Lyons; William and Nancy Henry, 4307 S. Helena, in memory of Nancy’s mother Marian Heglar; Mrs. Boyd McDowell, 1521 S. Division.
Leann Smiley, Elk, returned to Spokane in time for the big ice storm, to which she says, “Wow!” She writes: “It is heart-warming and enlightening to see the citizens of my hometown reach out to others in our collective time of need.”
With her $100 contribution, Smiley wrote: “I have much more to be thankful for than money … Therefore I am donating all of my Christmas money to charities this year. P.S.: A special thanks to all the citizens of Elk for their prayers for my mother.”
Other gifts of $100 came from Betty Littell, 3840 S. Bates, “in memory of my husband, Marv Littell, who supported the Christmas Fund each year”; Scoty’s Electric, 5805 E. Lochsa Drive, “because we care: Scott, Judy, Brittney, Jared and Jane.”
The Crystal Chandeliers, a ballroom dance club, contributed $100 to help bring blessings and joy to those in need; Ron and Diane Kaufman, 5015 S. Woodfield; the Eaton family, 2520 S. Magnolia; Donald Scharffer, 1014 W. 15th; the Kelly family, 5112 S. Helena; Claude Mitson, 2018 E. 63rd; Belle M. Potts, 1015 S. Altamont.
The Spokane-Inland Empire Chapter of American Ex-Prisoners of War, contributed an additional $100 to their previous donation “to this most worthy cause. Our ex-POWs will never forget that feeling of want and hunger and wish to extend a helping hand to those in need.”
Also giving $100: Roger and Orene Harder, 702 S. Rimrock Drive, “in memory of our fathers and our twin grandchildren”; Kenneth and Katheryn Yanzick, Chattaroy, “in memory of my parents, William Harmen Sr. and Nina Richardson - we miss them very much”; and eight anonymous donors.