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Christmas Comes Early: West Hills Food Pantry Hosts Christmas Shop

More than 100 local families attended the annual event, which is made possible through community donations.

Moon residents Nita Neugebauer and Jan Wertz got the idea one Christmas season, as volunteers for the West Hills Food Pantry.

"It was probably 22 years ago now," Neugebauer said. "Some students from Carnegie Mellon brought over a box with some books and toys, just small used toys. And, boy, has it grown since then."

The West Hills Food Pantry on Tuesday held its annual Christmas shop at Sharon Community Presbyterian Church. The event, spearheaded by pantry volunteers, served more than 140 families from the Moon and Coraopolis area. 

Families trickled in throughout the morning, sifting through tables of board games, housewares and gently used clothing. 

The pantry offers the gifts for free to eligible families in need in the community every Christmas season. 

Volunteers said gift donations were on the decline this year, but businesses including Walgreens, Prudential Realty and the China Palace in Moon contributed to the supply of donations. 

"We've got a little bit of everything here," said volunteer Judy Haluka. "We have gifts here for age zero to 90." 

The pantry will also sponsor a Christmas dinner for existing clientele from 1 to 4 p.m. on Saturday. Students from Moon Area High School will be on hand to play music for the event. 

Haluka said the pantry is still accepting donations for the Christmas season.  

"Toys, food, we never turn anything down," Haluka said. 

Visit the pantry's website for more. 

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