Despite the near-100-degree heat this week, some people are already thinking about the holiday season.

The New Albany Gazette plans to again sponsor its Sharing at Christmas program, which has provided food, including enough for a holiday meal, and toys when appropriate to needy Union County families for nearly half a century.

Although contributions were down some this past year, the volunteers from the Gazette staff hope to once again help about 250 families.

Applications for Sharing at Christmas boxes will be taken Oct. 1-26 and the Gazette office will be open one Saturday, Oct. 26, from 9 a.m. until noon for those who may be unable to come in during the week.

Boxes will contain some food staple items that should last for up to a month in addition to the items for a Christmas meal and possibly toys.

Boxes will be delivered by volunteers Friday, Dec. 20.

The Gazette accepts donations of money and new toys for Sharing at Christmas and is funded entirely by contributions. The Gazette absorbs all administrative costs for the program, which costs about $15,000 each year.

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