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The Spirit of Christmas: Annual holiday benefit open to the public Tuesday evening

November 30, 2011
Melissa Schneider - Editor ( , Fort Myers Beach Bulletin, Fort Myers Beach Observer

Jim and Sharon Jamieson have been very hard at work organizing this year's annual Spirit of Christmas holiday fund-raiser, and proud to announce the date is near taking place at the American Legion, 899 Buttonwood Drive, San Carlos Island, Tuesday, Dec. 6, from 5 to 10 p.m. and open to the public.

"We are so proud to run our seventh anniversary event open to the public once again at the American Legion," said Jim Jamieson, co-organizer of the benefit, along with his lovely wife, Sharon. "Post No. 274 is very excited about their total renovation to the main room. It looks like a nightclub with its indirect lighting and is much more comfortable for the non-smokers, now that there is a new fresh-air smoke eater installed."

During the holiday fund-raising festivities, look forward to a tasty hot meal, great drink prices, several wonderful prizes up for raffle, as well as a silent auction of great items and visits to local restaurants, lounges, golf communities, resorts, hotels, spas, as well as luxurious getaways, beauty treatments and excursions, just to name a few, all donated by gracious local hot spots.

Article Photos

Spirit of Christmas coordinators Jim and Sharon Jamieson have scheduled the annual holiday benefit for Tuesday, Dec. 6, from 5 to 10 p.m. Above, Jim, Sharon and their son, Joe, are sure to urge readers that this benefit is open to the public, so come one, come all! Photo courtesy JIM JAMIESON.

Live music will be heard by the well-known duo DAZ, and Mike & K.C., as will the cheers of many enjoying the great food and drink specials. Feast on your choice of homemade chicken parmesan or spaghetti and meatballs for just $6, complete with salad and fresh breadsticks.

For 15 years, Jim and Sharon have been helping local, struggling families around Christmas time. The number of families helped has grown to more than 100, with about 250 children, every year.

Since becoming the Spirit of Christmas Foundation, the couple, with intense help from local residents and businesses, raises funds to donate to hand-selected needy families of Fort Myers Beach and nearby areas.

Fact Box

Spirit of Christmas


What: Benefit to raise funds for local families and children in need. Lots of live music

with DAZ, great food, raffles and more.

When: Tuesday, Dec. 6, 5 to 10 p.m.

Where: 899 Buttonwood Drive


"We take our chosen families on a shopping spree at a Super WalMart store, so they can purchase what they need to make their Christmas a good one," Jim said. "The wonderful supporters of the Spirit of Christmas can feel very proud that their donations have helped about 1,000 families and 2,500 children over the years children that otherwise would not have had a Christmas that year."

Sharon works hard to find the special families that need help: families that are struggling with cancer and other illnesses that can drain their funds just to keep a family member alive; veterans that can't afford to provide their children a holiday because of medical problems; and so many other pitfalls.

"Many of these families have had their world cave in, losing their home, car even their dignity," Jim said. "It is a very exhausting job, finding the ones that really, desperately need our help and sometimes seems to be an endless project too large to handle. But then we get a tap on the shoulder, and we somehow find the energy once again to continue. The phone rings or the postman delivers a welcome donation, or someone comes forward to offer help. We think of them as Christmas angels."

The Jamiesons are sure to thank the Sons of the American Legion, The American Legion Post 274 and the members of the Auxillary, Chris and Joni Hall of Luxury Home Solutions and Family Foundation, The Outrigger Hotel, Smokin' Oyster Brewery, WalMart, Gloria and Ernest Lee, John and Sandy Solar, Rocky Steimle and the many other friends and contributors of the Spirit of Christmas organization.

"Without them, none of this would be possible."

Funds are also raised during the benefit to donate Christmas trees, wreaths and other holiday ornaments for the needy families for this occasion.

"We have really been narrowing in to where we do the most help to those very unfortunate families who would otherwise not be able to celebrate Christmas," Jim said.

As this is a 501-c3 foundation, all donations made to the charity are tax-deductible.

There is no charge to enter the benefit, although a donation of canned goods for the needy would be grateful and all who enter have the chance to win some fabulous door prizes. Again, this is a fund-raiser open to the public.

For more information, contact Jim and Sharon by calling 463-2717, 940-4236, emailing or visiting



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