Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday are all behind us. We've all probably spent some time during the past week getting new things and being thankful for the things we already have.
Now it's time for some giving - to those who may be less fortunate than we are.
The Mining Journal and the local Salvation Army are conducting the annual Cheer Club - in the program's 34th year - which gives presents to children who might not receive Christmas gifts otherwise.
Last year the Cheer Club served more than 1,000 needy children, and Salvation Army officials expect the demand will be even higher this year.
Troubled economic times continue in Superiorland. And while more people may be back to work this year, the cost of everything from gasoline to food has risen, straining some families' ability to make a decent Christmas celebration for their kids.
The Salvation Army's also strained this year. They went in to the fundraising season down about $90,000 in donations from last year. That's where the Cheer Club can make a big difference.
The Cheer Club collects unwrapped toys, games, gift cards, books, dolls, craft supplies, sports items, bikes - almost any item to brighten the holidays for a needy child. And all of these contributions remain in the area to be distributed by the Ishpeming and Marquette Salvation Army in time for Christmas.
To apply to receive gifts, go to the Marquette or Ishpeming Salvation Army with a picture ID, Social Security cards for everyone in the family, birth certificates for all children in the family, proof of income and proof of residency. Families have until Friday to register.
For more information about The Cheer Club, call the Marquette Salvation Army at 226-2241 or the Ishpeming Salvation Army at 486-8121.
Cheer Club items can be dropped off until Dec. 14 at The Mining Journal offices in Marquette and Ishpeming, the Marquette and Ishpeming Salvation Army offices, the Marquette Township hall, ACE Hardware in Gwinn and Bell Hospital in Ishpeming.
By helping the Cheer Club we can participate in the deeper meaning of the holiday season - it's all about giving.