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Adopt a Fort Dodge Soldier for Christmas
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The tags on a tree at the Great Bend American Legion Post 180 contain the Christmas gift wishes of veterans at the Fort Dodge Soldiers Home. The public is invited to stop in and “adopt a soldier” by buying a gift or making a monetary donation.

The American Legion Auxiliary at Post 180 in Great Bend is inviting the public to adopt a Fort Dodge Soldier this holiday season.

There is a Christmas tree at the post, located at 1011 Kansas Ave., with tags representing about 65 veterans. Post Commander Bo Levingston said the Fort Dodge residents were invited to write on the tags some items they would enjoy receiving for Christmas.

They don’t ask for a lot, Levingston said.

“One is asking for sweatpants, potato chips or body spray,” he said. Many would be happy to receive a $20 gift card from Wal-Mart. Aftershave, a leather wallet, a western shirt, sugar-free gum and a belt buckle are also items on some of the tags.

Helping with the effort is easy. “You come in and pick a name,” Levingston said. However, people will need to act quickly. Gifts are due by Tuesday, Dec. 3.

Unwrapped gifts in gift bags should be delivered to the American Legion Post 180, 1011 Kansas Ave., Great Bend, which is open after 5 p.m. most evenings. Monetary donations will also be accepted.

Members of the post will travel to Halsey Hall at the Fort Dodge Soldiers Home on Saturday, Dec. 8 and hand out the gifts.

“We’ll put a little Christmas cheer in their spirits that day,” Levingston said.

For more information contact Kandi Wolf, 797-5651, or Juanita Dreiling, 923-5474.