Littles shop thanks to fundraising effort
By RANDY GONZALES
Eight long months later, Thursday night finally was the night.
Maddy McClellan, 16, a junior this fall at Palco High School, saw firsthand the results of eight months of fundraising.
There at The Mall, 2918 Vine, were seven Littles with Bigs by their sides, part of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ellis County. The girls had $160 to shop for school clothes, thanks to Maddy's fundraising, plus an additional $20 per girl, courtesy of The Mall.
"It's very exciting; it's finally happening," McClellan said while watching the girls shop at Rue 21.
Itzel Guzman, who will be an eighth-grader at Hays Middle School, was shopping at Rue 21 with her Big, Audrey Jamison.
"I had an idea what to get, pants and tops," Guzman said.
Budgeting their money wasn't a problem.
"We're really good sales shoppers," Jamison said with a laugh. "Our mothers taught us well."
The Bigs and Littles hit other stores, too, looking for bargains at J.C. Penney and Stage, among other stores.
"I think it's cool to see what they like, what they actually will be wearing, how excited they are to get new clothes," McClellan said. "I'm watching from afar a little bit. It's fun to help them pick out clothes, that's the best part."
Jordyne Williams, who will be a freshman at Hays High School, already had found some things at Stage and was checking out at Rue 21 with a bagful of clothes, including a dress, shirts, pants and flip-flops.
Williams' Big, Rachel Bond, was there to help find just the right clothing.
"We're going more for what's appropriate at school," Bond said. "She already likes to budget shop, so I didn't have to worry about that too much. She wants to get as much clothes as she can for her money."
Being able to use the gift cards to buy school clothes helps a lot, Williams said.
"It will save my mom a lot of money," she said.
That's what McClellan likes to hear.
"It's crazy to know all the work that's been put into this is finally happening," McClellan said. "It's cool to watch it."