CALUMET - Saturday, kids who wanted to get presents for their parents could do so - and for free - at the New Beginnings Angel Mission Store in Calumet.
Parents, who were not allowed to stay at the store while the children shopped, dropped off their children so they could pick out presents with the help of volunteers.
Angel Mission Director Terry Bazin said the event came to fruition through members of her church who were trying to think of ways kids could get stuff for their parents for Christmas.
Scott Viau/Daily Mining Gazette
New Beginnings Angel Mission Store Director Terry Bazin helps Zadia Small of Calumet pick out presents for her parents Saturday. Everything in the store is free. Volunteers helped kids have their gifts wrapped.
"We then put the call out asking for brand-new gifts so the kids could pick something out," Bazin said.
This is the second year for the event after it started as an experiment last year.
"We weren't really sure it was going to work so we tried it and it really went well," Bazin said.
It was a success and something Bazin plans to continue.
Bazin, a cancer survivor, said all the work she does for the store and for the kids is her way of paying it forward.
"There's such a need up here," Bazin said.
Although the kids are able to shop free for their parents, Bazin said they are still in need of people to come and get angels from the angel tree and buy presents for other less fortunate kids in the area.
"We desperately need people to come in and take angels," Bazin said. "Last year it took us (until) 6 p.m. Christmas Eve, but we filled everybody we had and hopefully we'll be able to do it this year."
Co-Director Lynn Lanyon, who is also a cancer survivor, also considers this to be her way of paying it forward for all the help she has received over the years.
"This is my way of giving back," Lanyon said. "I love it. It's a lot of fun. The kids are what it's all about."
However, the New Beginnings Angel Mission Store isn't just free for kids to shop for Christmas. Every item in the store is always free and the store is open year round. The store is open Wednesday and Thursday from 9-3, Friday 9-6 and Saturday 9-2. They also recently had a kids-only shopping day for Mother's Day and Father's Day. Store organizers also plan to have a fashion show in March where models will wear clothes from the store.