How to give back to your community
Whether you are new to Lyons or a descendant of the original pioneer families, you probably know someone, a friend or neighbor who reminds you why Lyons is such a wonderful place to live. Personally, I have never lived in a community where so many of its residents seem to give back in one way or another. Lyons is full of local heroes. Monica McGuckin is one of mine.
If you were living in Lyons in 2011-2013, you may remember Monica McGuckin owned the Lyons Mercantile on Main Street. At the time, she was also chairperson of the Lyons Community Foundation (LCF). Monica and her husband, Ron are always helping their community from behind the scenes whether it is a tenant or a church in need of new windows. When Monica learned that there were over 1,000 beanie babies available, she crammed two loads of them into her SUV to transport them from the collector’s home in Denver to her garage on Apple Valley Road. From that moment, she knew that this collection of beanie babies had value and that she could donate them to her favorite local charity, the Lyons Community Foundation. After calling current Chair, Jeanne Moore to discuss her plan to take “suggested donations” at multiple locations and events around Lyons, it became evident that they could include the entire community and build awareness for the good work LCF does. With a “suggested donation” of $10 for these bundles of cuteness, LCF could potentially bring in $10,000 in 2022.
Chrystal DeCoster, past LCF board member and owner of Western Stars Gallery & Studio was the first person to sign up to consign the beanie babies on behalf of LCF. Since she already kept a secret stash of beanie babies at her shop, she knew that there was a growing demand for these cuties from people of all ages. By supporting LCF with a $10 donation, buying a beanie baby is an easy way to teach children to give back to their community at an early age, all the while, supplying their friends with a birthday gift or simply adding to their growing collection.
Monica and Chrystal agreed that bringing shoppers into local stores looking for beanie babies would be a “positive marketing” plan. It also demonstrates how local businesses support their community through LCF. Several local businesses readily agreed to Monica’s plan: Uniquely Lyons, Red Canyon Art, HJB Designs, Sage and Grace Botanicals and Western Stars all have beanie babies available in their stores. Currently, Red Canyon Art, Uniquely Lyons and Western Stars Gallery & Studio have Easter-themed beanie babies to fill your child’s Easter basket. LCF will also have some on hand at the concession stand in Lavern Johnson Park on Saturday, April 16th from 10am-12pm during the Calvary Foothills Church Easter Egg Hunt. Come join us for some family-friendly fun in the park!
Do not fret if you miss the Easter-themed beanie babies, there will be more for Graduation Day, Mother’s Day, Memorial Day, July 4th, Halloween, Christmas, etc. LCF will be sure to have some on hand at community events such as the Artisan Market on June 4th and at the Sandstone Concert Series every Wednesday evening this summer. If you are a collector and you are looking for one in particular, please reach out to LCF at firstname.lastname@example.org.
When current LCF Chair, Jeanne Moore (on left) tried to thank past LCF Chair, Monica McGuckin (on right) for her fundraising efforts, Monica replied, “It’s not about me. It’s about inspiring other people to give back to the community. It’s a team effort.” Indeed, it is. Thank you Monica for inspiring all of us to give back.
Lyons Community Foundation