Spirit Halloween raises $50,000 for Geisinger Janet Weis Children's Hospital

Patrick Kernan, The Times Leader, Wilkes-Barre, Pa.
·2 min read

Feb. 23—DANVILLE — Several locations of Spirit Halloween stores teamed up to raise more than $50,000 to donate to the Geisinger Janet Weis Children's Hospital last year.

The stores held a virtual check presentation recently.

According to a release from Geisinger, six Spirit Halloween locations — including those in Wilkes-Barre, Hazleton, Dickson City, Bloomsburg, Selinsgrove and Muncy — teamed up for the third year in a row during the 2020 Halloween season and raised a total of $54,964.

The money is going toward the Child Life Department at the Janet Weis Children's Hospital.

In Geisinger's release, Allison Naumann, annual giving coordinator for Geisinger Health Foundation, praised Spirit Halloween for their efforts.

"The Child Life Department was very thankful for this wonderful donation," said Allison Naumann, annual giving coordinator at Geisinger Health Foundation. "Child Life intends to use the money to purchase new Shadow Buddy dolls and a new camera for milestone photos for Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) families."

According to the official Shadow Buddies website, the company manufactures condition-specific dolls for children going through medical troubles. The dolls are designed to help the children feel less alone and also learn more about their illness and the treatments for it.

The shops raised money by asking customers last season if they wanted to either make a donation or round up their change. Jordon Reese, regional manager for Spirit in Central Pennsylvania, said this initiative means a lot to their employees.

"Our employees are extremely passionate about our program and know how much it impacts their local children's hospital. We have numerous contests and lots of friendly competition to truly get as big of a donation as possible with our very short season," he said in Geisinger's release. "Spirit of Children Halloween care packages were sent to the hospital as well which included costumes, activity coloring books, crayons and treat bags for the Child Life team to distribute."

Over the course of the three years of donations, Spirit Halloween has managed to raise more than $130,000 for the children's hospital, all told.