Trick-or-treating for our troops

HealthBeat

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Halloween is here and that means kids will be going door to door collecting candy.

But not all of them will be keeping the candy.

For kids, Halloween means it’s costume, and maybe more importantly, candy time.

“I’m going to try to keep all the sour ones or Reese’s, all that kind of stuff,” Melody Bolen said.

But the rest of 8-year-old Melody Bolen’s candy will be sent off to our troops, with a handwritten thank you letter.

“In these care packages for the military it’s not just candy. It’s toothbrushes, socks, little letters, you know things that remind them of home. So it’s really a great way to give back and to give them something in return,” Kari Bolen said.

This is the ninth year Family Dentistry of Sioux Falls has held the candy buy-back event.

Dr. Kari Bolen says community participation is growing every year.

“Last year we got 281 pounds of candy. Over the last 9 years we’ve almost collected 2,000 pounds of candy,” Kari said.

For each pound of candy donated, kids will receive $1.

And if thanking our troops and handing over some candy for a few dollars isn’t incentive enough, kids have even more to look forward to.

Anybody who donates candy gets entered into a giveaway for a tablet or a kids Sonicare toothbrush.

While giving away some candy seems like a small task, Patty Redlinger knows just how big of an impact these care packages really make.

Less than a week ago her son returned home from a deployment, meeting his daughter for the first time.

“He had spent 10 months in Germany and Poland and, he’s home for awhile, and going to return, try to return back to normal,” Redlinger said.

She says receiving packages helped her son through feelings of homesickness.

“It means a lot, to receive something from home, it just means so much, it warms their heart,” Redlinger said.

“Candy plus teeth and toothbrushes and getting that candy from the kids and donating to a good causeā€¦ it all makes sense, it’s right up our alley,” Bolen said.

Kids can drop off their candy Friday from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. at Family Dentistry of Sioux Falls.

For more information on the event, click here.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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