Local first graders kick off annual "Deck the Halls" canned food drive at Ashley HomeStore

Local first graders kick off annual "Deck the Halls" canned food drive at Ashley HomeStore

HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - On Monday Oak Grove Primary School and Longleaf Elementary first graders kicked off their 10th annual "Deck the Halls" at Ashley HomeStore to benefit Homes of Hope for Children.

The annual canned food drive began with students crafting ornaments for their classroom's designated Christmas tree, which is placed inside the Ashley HomeStore showroom in Hattiesburg. The children also visit the Ashley HomeStore to "Deck the Halls" to enjoy snacks from Krispy Kreme, fun and a visit a special guest.

Students are encouraged to have their friends and family visit the store to view their ornaments and donate canned goods under the class's tree. The donated canned goods will go to Home of Hope for Children, which is a Pine Belt ministry that serves children in crisis by providing strong, Christian homes while ensuring each child is loved unconditionally.

This year, Ashley Furniture HomeStore is planning to collect 1700 items of food this year.

"When the Longleaf/Oak Grove first graders are in our store, to help us to "Deck the Halls", it is the most electric environment our store experiences all year long." Bo Pennebaker of Ashley Furniture HomeStore said. "This is the tenth year of working with Lamar County Schools and they are wonderful partners in supporting our community."

The classroom that collects the most canned goods will be rewarded with a pizza party, courtesy of Ashley HomeStore.

The student's ornaments will be displayed through Wednesday, Dec. 20, and the winning classroom will also be determined that day.

Ashley HomeStore encourages anyone to stop by to view the ornaments and please donate a canned/non-perishable food item to help this great cause. For more information, contact Ashley HomeStore at 601-602-0200.