SUMMIT, NJ - Entering its 53rd year of providing holiday joy to more than 400 low-income families and seniors from Summit and neighboring communities, The Santa Claus Shop is busy making preparations to once again open its doors.

The Shop's 'elves' are also asking for local / area individuals and businesses to consider making a monetary donation to keep the giving spirit bright. Checks can be made payable to SHIP, with Santa Claus Shop noted on the check’s memo line, and mailed to the Santa Claus Shop, P.O. Box 119, Summit, NJ 07901. The ability to make an online donation is also available at summitsantaclausshop.com.

The monetary donations enable The Santa Claus Shop to purchase the gifts that allow less fortunate neighbors -- all of whom are referred by local service agencies -- to experience the joy of holiday giving without financial burden.

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Chaired by Summit residents Michelle Frei, Kim McGovern, Megan Rende and Christine Semcer -- and co-chaired by Lauren Bialek, Susan Campbell, Maritess Manaluz and Marnie O’Connell -- this year's Santa Claus Shop will be held at St. John’s Lutheran Church, with families offered shopping hours by invitation only on Wednesday, December 4, preceded by a hosted a holiday gathering for senior citizens on Tuesday, December 3.   

Santa Claus Shop guests personally select a household item, new clothing for each member of their immediate family, a hat and mittens, a book, and a new toy for each child.  Local volunteers are responsible for the shop setup, personal shopping services for each guest, gift-wrapping, and clean up.