Army & Air Force Exchange Service
For the second consecutive year, Tinker Air Force Base Exchange shoppers enjoyed a special holiday surprise, having each of their layaway balances paid in full by nonprofit organization Soldier's Wish. The balances totaled nearly $4,000 in holiday purchases.
All Tinker Exchange shoppers who had layaway balances were invited to the main food court on Dec. 20 under the guise of a surprise sweepstakes win. Upon arrival, they were greeted by Tinker Exchange General Manager Charles Eaves, along with representatives from the air base and Soldier's Wish. Each shopper was then presented with a gift-wrapped shopping cart assembled by the store team that included their layaway merchandise inside.
[Read more: Army & Air Force Exchange Service to Grow Autonomous Store Network]
"We were thrilled once again to get the chance to set up this event for our shoppers this year," Eaves said. "This is a perfect opportunity to help make a busy and stressful holiday season a little easier for the Tinker community."
Central Pennsylvania-based Nittany MinitMart recently raised more than $18,000 for area animal shelters with the help of its customers. Shoppers were encouraged to round up their orders to the nearest dollar at checkout during the campaign.
"It was amazing to see how passionate our customers and employees are about this cause," said Nickie Masullo, director of operations at Nittany. "Our Galeton store raised over $2,100 just in that location. Our managers and staff were competing to see which location could raise the most money."
The funds will be distributed to shelters near each of the 28 Nittany MinitMart locations, ensuring that the impact is felt across the chain's operating area, the company said. Donations will help support ongoing efforts to provide care, shelter and medical attention to animals in need.
Masullo and her team are currently planning for Nittany MinitMart's snnual Fireman's Fundraiser, held in the spring. Last year's "Fuel the Cause" initiative raised almost $150,000 for area volunteer fire companies.