MANVILLE, NJ - Volunteers are invited to join Operation Shoebox New Jersey pack care packages for US troops overseas and commemorate the service organization’s 14th anniversary on Saturday, Feb. 16th.

The packing will be at the Kavanaugh VFW Post #2290, 600 Washington Ave., Manville, with registration at 10:30 a.m., followed by opening ceremonies. Packing begins at 11 a.m. A light lunch will be provided.

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Soldiers, Marines, sailors and airmen who have received packages from OPSHBX NJ during their deployments are expected to attend and extend their thanks to the volunteers. Several Division I football players from the Rutgers Scarlet Knights will also help out.

Volunteer packers are encouraged to donate personal care items for shipment, including snacks and toiletries. Check the shopping list on our website (www.opshoeboxnj.org) and bring along a bag of needed items.

The packages sent overseas will include  bagged candy collected donated by shoppers at ACME Supermarkets throughout the tri-state area and  trail mix, beef jerky, gum, candy, granola bars, powdered drink mixes, coffee, tea, oatmeal, hot chocolate, toothpaste, tooth brushes, ear swabs, moist wipes, sun block, eye drops, soap, shampoo, socks, stationary, envelopes, pens, batteries and other items donated by shoppers at area supermarkets.

Volunteers will also have the opportunity to sit down and write a short letter to the troops; all cards and letters will be inserted into the boxes. We'll also add stuffed animals and other gift items for the troops to hand out to young children.

Since its founding in February, 2005, OPSHBX NJ volunteers have shipped over 153,000 personal care packages overseas.

Financial support is also needed to help pay the costs of shipping the packages. All donations are tax deductible. OPSHBX NJ volunteers will also be selling a variety of retail items to help raise funds to pay shipping costs.

Call Operation Shoebox New Jersey headquarters at (908) 698-0333 for further information or check the website at www.opshoeboxnj.org.