Residents of Plum Coulee banded together this year, filling 1,087 shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child. The packages were collected and loaded into a trailer at the community tree lighting last night.

Loretta Dyck is with the Plum Coulee Bergthaler Church. The congregation collected 816 of the parcels this year. She explains the collection process is a year-round effort, noting work for this Christmas began shortly after the parcels were picked up last year.

"We usually do Item of the Month at Church and then people donate as the year goes on, and we try to do a few fund raisers. It all comes together at the end and we buy all the extra stuff we need."

She adds while the entire congregation gets involved, it's the Sunday School kids that hold packing parties to fill each box and write letters to the kids who will receive the gifts.