While Truckee’s number one elf Jesse Griffin may be on a quest to help spread Christmas cheer to the seniors of the Truckee Donner Senior Apartments, she is quick to note that the seniors are not the only ones who may be in need during the holidays and throughout the year.

“All these programs, they need support from the community,” said Griffin, rifling off names of countless goodwill organizations in the area such as the cancer and extended care centers at Tahoe Forest Hospital, Sierra Senior Services, Truckee Community Christmas, and Project MANA, now part of Sierra Community House. “We need to come together and provide for these people. I just want to make sure the town comes together, whether it be [Christmas Wish Box], the [extended care center], meals on wheels, the coat drive, or the food drive.”



Truckee Community Christmas is a nonprofit organization that steps in during the holiday season to support Truckee’s neediest families. They provide food, toys, coats, books, and grocery gift cards to families, teenage moms and their babies, and homebound seniors. From Nov. 30 through Dec. 12, there will be collection bins throughout the area to collect donations of these items. In 2018, TCC helped make the holidays were a little brighter for total of 873 people, which included 378 children, 322 adults, and 145 seniors.

Food donations can be dropped off at Save Mart, Safeway, La Galleria, Coldwell Banker, Truckee Elementary, Glenshire Elementary, or Alder Creek Middle School. Suggested canned food and nonperishable items include vegetables, fruit, soup, enchilada sauce, fi sh and meat, jam, cooking oil, granola bars, fruit cups, Jell-O, juice, and nutrition shakes like Ensure. Dry packaged goods like beans, rice, noodles, cereals, instant coffee and tea, chicken and beef bouillon cubes, masa, flour, sugar, tamale husks, macaroni and cheese, nuts, popcorn, paper towels, toilet paper, napkins, and dish soap are also needed.

Help keep your neighbors warm by donating clean, gently used, warm winter coats or purchase them new for people of all ages and sizes. Coats are accepted at Church of the Mountains in downtown Truckee and at Tahoe Forest Church on Hirschdale Road, and Lolë at Northstar. You can also donate new, unwrapped children’s gifts at over 40 locations.

TCC also welcomes the donation of your time by volunteering to sort and pack donations on Dec. 12 and 13, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Tahoe Truckee Unified School District office, 11603 Donner Pass Rd. For those who prefer to give a tax-deductible contribution, checks can be mailed to Truckee Community Christmas, P.O. Box 2955, Truckee, CA 96160.

Find the full list of donation sites at truckeecommunitychristmas.com. Look for updates on

their Facebook page, @TruckeeCommunityChristmas or call (530) 587-2757 for information.

Sierra Community House is a service organization that provides to those in need throughout the holiday season at a variety of events, including the following:

Let’s Talk Turkey food pantry distribution

• Nov. 21 — Incline Village, 2 to 4 p.m.

• Nov. 25 — Tahoe City, 2 to 4 p.m.

• Nov. 26 — Truckee, 2:30 to 4:30 p.m.

• Nov. 27 — Kings Beach, 2 to 4 p.m.

North Lake Tahoe 10th Annual Tahoe Community Thanksgiving Celebration

Nov. 28 from 2 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at the North Lake Tahoe Event Center in Kings Beach. Call Meera Beser at (775) 230- 1066.

Winter Warmth & Wellness Giveaway

North Tahoe Event Center — Saturday, Dec. 21, 2 to 5 p.m.

Village Christian Church Holiday Dinner Box

Applications will soon go out to all the Family Resource Centers and are due back Wednesday, Nov. 18 by 3:30 p.m. Box distribution will take place on Dec. 21 from 9 a.m. to noon.

To donate, find the office closest to you, sierracommunityhouse.org/contact-us/


Main Image Caption: BOXED: Volunteers sort and pack donated food items that will be distributed to needy families as part of the annual Truckee Community Christmas. Photo by Greyson Howard


  • Juliana Demarest

    Juliana Demarest is a Jersey girl with ink in her blood. She fell in love with print journalism at a young age in the '80s when her Uncle Tony would take her to "work" at his weekly paper. In 1997, she co-founded a weekly newspaper in North Jersey. One day, she went to photograph a local farmer for a news story. She ended up marrying him and leaving journalism to become a farmer's wife. In 2010, they packed up their two children and headed to Truckee in pursuit of the outdoor life. She didn't realize just how much she missed journalism until she joined Moonshine in 2018 after taking time off to be mom. Connect with Juliana juliana@moonshineink.com

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