Dentists buy Halloween candy from trick-or-treaters
BLACKSBURG — Halloween in the New River Valley has come and gone, but some New River Valley children are still reaping the benefits of their candy collections from last Wednesday night.
Several local dental offices are offering candy-holders $1 a pound for their Halloween candy.
The dental offices are participating in Halloween Candy Buyback, a program organized by Operation Gratitude.
According to www.operationgratitude.com, the organization sends 100,000 care packages annually to U.S. service members deployed in hostile regions, to their children left behind and to Wounded Warriors, veterans and first responders.
“Our mission,” the website states, “is to lift morale, bring a smile to a service member’s face and express to our Armed Forces the appreciation and support of the American people.”
Leading up to the holiday season, Operation Gratitude enlists dental offices around the country to collect Halloween candy to be sent to troops overseas as part of a holiday care package.
Last year, Operation Gratitude shipped and received more than 125 tons of candy, according to their website, and this year the organization hopes to send 66,000 holiday care packages overseas.
In Blacksburg, NRV Dental owner and dentist Kimberlyn Atherton and her office participated in the buyback program.
According to www.halloweencandybuyback.com, Real Life Dental Care in Blacksburg and Kool Smiles in Christiansburg also participated.
Atherton’s office collected candy through Wednesday and offered $1 per pound of candy collected for up to five pounds.
“Halloween candy represents a warm memory of life back home and that children care enough to share what they got with troops is a real good thing,” Atherton said. “We just want to be able to help our troops overseas in any way that we can.”
Atherton said kids typically receive too much candy on Halloween and could do with less than a quarter of the amount they actually received.
“My kids got quite a bit, and I think it’s a really good idea to share with people that are not getting it,” Atherton said.
“It just helps the troops think of life back home and something nice and not fighting a war.”
The Roanoke Times | 381-8627
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