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About Amy Umble: Amy Umble writes about religion and social issues affecting the Fredericksburg community. You can email her at

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Starting the Holiday Season

I guess it’s officially the holiday season now. A reminder: the deadline is fast approaching for donating to the University of Mary Washington’s annual effort to help Head Start Children. Shoeboxes and small gifts are due Dec. 1. Between three area Head Start classes, they have 700 kids to help. The shoeboxes get stuffed with gloves, hats, scarves, crayons, small toys and other treats.

To help, donate empty shoeboxes, shoeboxes filled with the items or any of the goodies. Please don’t donate candy or food or religious items.

Donations can be dropped off at the Office of Student Activities and Community Service in Seacobeck Hall. The office hopes to provide gifts for 700 area Head Start students and needs the donations by Dec. 1. For details, call 540/654-1061 or e–mail

Also, this Sunday, check out The Free Lance-Star for more ways to help. One of the ways listed is to donate to Micah Ecumenical Ministries’ fill-the-cart effort. Shopping carts will be placed in many locations throughout the area. Each location is a cart sponsor, and there will be a contest about the carts. We only listed a few locations, but because there is a contest, I wanted people to know all the locations with carts:

St. George’s Episcopal Church, Fredericksburg Baptist Church, The Presbyterian Church in Fredericksburg, Christ Lutheran Church, Fredericksburg United Methodist Church, The Marshall School, Giant on U.S. 17 in Stafford County, PBGH (downtown), Potter Homes, St. Jude’s Catholic Church in Spotsylvania County, Stafford County Sheriff’s Office, the Stafford County commissioner of revenue and treasurer’s office, Mary Washington Hospital, Spotsylvania Presbyterian Church and The Sunken Well Tavern.

Here’s what you can put in the carts: adult  underwear, white crew or tube socks, toiletries,   feminine hygiene products, batteries, thermal  underwear,  hand warmers,  gloves, warm hats.


Call Micah with any questions: 540/479-4116. 

And I’ll keep you updated throughout the season with more ways to help.