Dec. 25, 2013 — Grahn — Christmas is truly a time of giving, and receiving in the rural community of Grahn in Carter County, where the old schoolhouse remains a hub of activity for the community.
Juggling the demands of a spirited 4-year-old and a slightly fussy 4-month-old grandson, Grahn Community Center Director Starlene Harris said dozens of volunteers have been working hard to prepare for today’s annual Grahn “Christmas Store” distribution.
“They’ve been here working for the past two weeks setting up these stores. We have a store full of toys. We have a shoe store and a store with personal hygiene things,” Harris said, explaining a volunteer “shopper” accompanies parents to each of the stores within the old school, while others are ready to help wrap and carry packages.
Out of necessity, the community center does a lot with a little, Harris said, explaining supporters seem to have a way of knowing how to provide precisely what is needed at the right time. Gearing up for today’s distribution, for example, she said one man took a grocery list to Grayson and paid for everything needed to make a big breakfast for the 62 volunteers, while another provided 25 bags of potatoes and another delivered loads of toilet paper and paper towels.
Neighboring Kirk Memorial Baptist Church provided bags of flour and nearby Grahn Hill Free Will Baptist Church purchased sugar, with Three Pines Free Will Baptist taking up a love offering that gave enough funds to pay for meats, additional canned goods, peanut butter and bread. Two schools in northern Ohio provide the toys and shoes distributed in Grahn each holiday season, she added, noting additional support from a group near Columbus, as well as the owner of Louisville Fire Brick, which once operated a brick plant in the rural community.