Giveaway helps families affected by coronavirus economic impact

Courtney Blankenship
Balloons and More Inc. employees created 11 baskets of Easter goodies, sponsored by four additional Pratt businesses, to give away to families nominated for community support.

After helping with last month’s balloon hunt around the community, Balloons and More, Inc. owner Tonja Harrison, decided to pay it forward to the Pratt community by giving away 11 Easter baskets to local families in need on Friday, April 10.

Harrison said there were four businesses and several individuals who donated money and toys for the baskets. The businesses who helped out by donating were Skaggs Ace Hardware, Memories, Simply Southwest and Turquoise Ranch.

“I wanted to do this because this community has been so good supporting me during this time,” Harrison said. “I wanted to give back to the community.”

The original plan was to make and hold a drawing for one free basket but with all the donations received, as well as the business of over 40 paying customers who ordered baskets, Balloons and More was able to donate 11 baskets stuffed with Easter goodies. There was enough so that every family nominated, with the exception of one family which did not provide a delivery address, received a basket.

“The baskets all contain a little candy and stuffed animals. The rest just varies depending on the age of the children,” Harrison said. “The four businesses donated items, so they are included as well. Again, depending on the age, not all baskets included everything that was donated.”

The size and contents of each basket depended on how many kids were in each family. Harrison said the age range of the kids varied from around 9 months to 15 years old.

“The community nominated the families,” Harrison said. “We asked on Facebook for nominations for families that might not be able to do something special for Easter this year for their kids because of the coronavirus impact on the economy.”

Harrison said the giveaway went well, and the families were happy to receive the baskets. In the future, Harrison said another balloon hunt could be on the horizon, possibly taking place within the next few weeks.

“We are also going to offer a May Day event to ”Ding Dong Ditch“ flowers on May Day, and offer a special for Mother’s day,” Harrison said.