How many times during this uncertain year of 2020 have I been reminded of our beloved Mr. Rogers and his now famous quote, “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’”?

Our Park Rapids community has proven, once again, that despite the months of scary news, we are blessed with an abundance of helpers. It is a joy to be a helper – to answer the call, to rise to the occasion, to fill a need – not just in the community, but in ourselves. It feels good to know we did our part.

And we had so many hundreds of people who answered that call this year during the Toys for Girls and Boys and Tiny Tots gift drive!

But the real heroes among us are Tanja Zentz and her father, John. For six weeks, they lived and breathed this endeavor. They met with families to fill out needs, sought sponsors to adopt families, collected toys at the generous businesses in town, shopped when others couldn't – and dare I say, had sleepless nights wondering if this year, when the need was greater than ever, would there be enough?

Thank you to the Enterprise for covering this family and their vision and their story of selfless giving. And we know by the pictures of the family and community helpers in last weeks' paper and the families that came to graciously accept their children's gifts there was more than enough! Thank you, Tanja and John, for letting us be the helpers in 2020. Merry Christmas!