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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Garco Construction gives big boost to the Christmas Bureau

Three-month-old Maddilynn Martell makes the trip to the Christmas Bureau with her mother Monika Martell at the Spokane County Fairgrounds on Dec. 18. (Kathy Plonka / The Spokesman-Review)

A Christmas angel has visited The Spokesman-Review in the form of Garco Construction, which gifted the Christmas Bureau with donation of $25,000 to provide a much-needed boost.

The contribution included $7,160 in donations from employees, which the company matched.

“As we look forward to our 40th year in business, we at Garco Construction want to thank our Spokane community that has been responsible for much of our success,” wrote President Clancy Welsh.

“Our team at Garco would like to thank The Spokesman-Review, Catholic Charities, Volunteers of America and all the volunteers that continue to make the Christmas Fund such a vital part of the holiday experience here in Spokane. From all of us at Garco we would like to wish everyone a safe holiday season and a Happy New Year!”

Garco is not the only Christmas angel who helps out with the Christmas Bureau every year.

There’s a long list of local businesses that provide services that help keep the bureau running smoothly.

Food is what keeps the volunteers fueled and Safeway/Albertsons donated donuts every day, and also gave bags of candy for single adult recipients. Pizza Pipeline gave a discount on pizzas for lunch during setup. Arby’s donated lunch for 100 volunteers a day every day the bureau is open. Luigi’s donated pasta for lunch during a setup day.

Cravens Coffee contributed coffee and cups for the volunteers, while URM gave coffee and cups for recipients. The Women and Children’s Free Restaurant provided daily soup at a discount.

Equipment and materials have to be stored year-round and ABD mini-storage gives a large discounts on storage units. Jim Custer Enterprises helped set up. Earthworks Recycling donated recycling containers and emptied them when full.

LCD Exposition Services donated the pipes and drapes used to divide up the room. Costco provided carts for toy transport. Bunzi gave bags for toy bagging and Yoke’s donated bags for book bagging.

Central Valley High School, the Spokane Chiefs and the Spokane Indians all donated teddy bears and other stuffed animals. The Vet’s Garage made wooden “Hoo Hoo” trucks to be given away.

St. Mary’s Catholic School and Providence Medical Group collected pajamas. St. Vincent de Paul donated gloves that were given away to adult recipients who did not have children.

A to Z Rental gave a discount on the stage used for live music. Hoffman’s Music Co. donated the sound equipment for the performances.

Penske Truck Rental provided box trucks for setup and teardown. Parson’s Construction Co. donates time and labor.

“They send a crew to help with setup and tear down during work hours and we are beyond grateful,” said Christmas Bureau coordinator Sierra Heinen.


Though the Christmas Bureau has Christmas angels helping, more are needed.

Garco’s generous contribution pushed the most recent donation tally to $38,318.08, bringing the year-to-date total to $421,646.21, which is alarmingly far away from the goal of $525,000.

Huppin’s donated $4,618. “It is with special thanks to the volunteers who turn our locally-owned newspaper’s vision into reality – to serve those in need this holiday season – that the owners and employees of Huppin’s TV, Audio, Camera and More continue our tradition of contributing to The Spokesman-Review Christmas Fund,” wrote company President Murray Huppin. “The selfless dedication of the Christmas Bureau’s team members, highlighted in this year’s fund raising updates, are an inspiration for all in our community. Please accept our check for $4,618 to add to the warmth and spirit of the holidays.”

Gallagher Benefits contributed $1,505.08.

Nancy Evans and Greg MacDonald, of Spokane, gave $1,000. “Enclosed please find our Christmas donation of $1,000 in support of the services you provide to the under served adults and children in the Spokane area during this Christmas season,” they wrote. “We wish you success in reaching your goal and thank you for the kindness you show to those who need it most. Merry Christmas!”

Michael Jensen, of Spokane, donated $1,000.

An anonymous Spokane donor sent $500, writing “Each morning my husband and I read all the stories of the lives of those you touch with your Christmas Fund. Please use our anonymous gift, out of our abundance, to make the Christmas season brighter for others.”

Jeannette Murphy, of Spokane, contributed $500 via PayPal. “Our family is grown now and we feel the best gift for each of us is to share our blessings with others in the form of a donation to the Christmas Bureau,” she wrote. “Thank you for helping others during this season of giving.”

An anonymous donor gave $500, writing “Honoring the spirit of Christmas … for the joy and happiness of children all ways and always.” Linda Solan contributed $500. Gary Price, of Spokane, sent $500 via PayPal.

Joan Reuthinger, of Spokane, and Larry Reuthinger, of Deer Park, donated $300 “in memory of our parents and Larry’s late wife, Linnea Reuthinger. Thanks to the Xmas Bureau for all that you do.”

Betty Harrington and her sister, Pam White, donated $300. “Thank you for all you do to help the families who are less fortunate than we are,” they wrote. “God bless you.”

Arvid Olson, of Palouse, Washington, gave $250 in memory of Bruce Kellam.

Joe and Carolyn Schauble, of Spokane, contributed $200 in memory of their parents, Robert and Marcy Schauble and Carl and Edna Magee. “Thank you for all that you do,” they wrote.

Jim and Linda Hunt, of Spokane, donated $200. “It takes a village to raise a good citizenry,” they wrote. “Thank you Spokesman-Review for giving voice to that village of a ‘common good’ and support for those in need.”

Dan and Scooter Mahoney, of Spokane, donated $200. “We are happy to make this contribution in honor of friends who work to make the lives of children better,” they wrote. “And a special ‘Thank you’ to all the wonderful volunteers who give so much of their time and energy to make the Christmas Bureau happen.”

Jo Anne Granger, of Colbert, sent $200 via PayPal.

An anonymous Spokane donor gave $150 “in loving memory of family we have lost.” Another anonymous donor also gave $150.

Leanna Shauvin, of Spokane, donated $100. An anonymous Spokane donor sent $100, writing “Thank you so much for all your hard work.” Shirley Schrawyer, of Spokane, gave $100 via PayPal. “In thanks and gratitude to God for his miraculous healing and restoration,” she wrote. Douglas Jayne, of Spokane, and Janet Bostian each contributed $100 via PayPal.

Mary Clute contributed $70 via PayPal. Randi and Keith Marsh, of Otis Orchards, sent $50. An anonymous Spokane donor gave $50. Ann Kester donated $50 via PayPal. Elizabeth A. Merry gave $25 via PayPal in memory of Art Smith, 1938-2017.

For donations made through PayPal, The Spokesman-Review contributed the processing fee.