Meals on Wheels PLUS of Manatee is holding its 15th Annual Community Holiday Shoebox Collection this weekend — with a twist.
This year's collection of gifts for Manatee County seniors will include a drive-thru and contactless drop-off in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The collection is taking place from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday at Lakewood Ranch Elks Lodge, located at 4602 Lena Road. Meals on Wheels PLUS is aiming to collect 1,000 wrapped and filled shoeboxes, which will then be delivered during the holiday season.
"These boxes are often times the only holiday present seniors receive," Meals on Wheels PLUS said in a press release. "This year it is especially important because of the isolation so many of our seniors are facing."
Other precautions that will be taken because of COVID-19 are temperature checks at the door to the lodge and a mask requirement for entry into the lodge.
Participants will receive one raffle ticket for each shoebox they drop off. The release stated that shoeboxes are typically filled with around 10 items, should be filled with tissue, secured with elastic and tagged as male, female or neutral.
Examples of items that can be included are pens and pencils, paperback word puzzles, socks, holiday trinkets, small flashlights and hygienic products. Razors, candy, candles, fragile items and gift cards should not be included.