After a week’s postponement, Sussex County’s 38th annual Caroling on The Circle took place Dec. 13. The event highlights the county’s annual Pack the Pod food drive. County Administrator Todd Lawson said so far 18,750 items have been collected from businesses, organizations, school groups, county employees and individuals. The drive continues to Thursday, Dec. 30; goods can be dropped off from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday in a container at the front door of the county administration building, 2 The Circle, Georgetown.
Local musicians Kevin Short and Ed Shockley led a large crowd in singing traditional favorite Christmas songs. They were joined by Lyra Marquense, the Children’s Choir of St. Michael’s Church, Sussex Academy Singers and members of Milford Community Band. County and state elected officials also joined the pair on stage near the end of the event, which is closed out with the singing of “Silent Night” by candlelight.
Started in 1984 as part of the Delaware First initiative, Caroling on The Circle continues to help those in need a generation later. To date, the community has donated nearly 775,000 food items through the program.
In 2020, an abbreviated campaign collected about 15,000 items, despite the curtains coming down on last year’s caroling event due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Participating groups so far include county council, county employees, ALOFT AeroArchitects, Steve Class/Colonial East, First State Manufactured Housing Association, Fuqua, Willard, Stevens & Schab law firm, Little Einsteins daycare, Nicola Pizza, as well as Georgetown Elementary, Long Neck Elementary, North Georgetown Elementary, and Rehoboth Elementary schools, Millsboro Middle School, and Delmarva Christian High, Sussex Academy and Seaford High schools.
Items collected will be donated to approximately 20 area pantries, shelters and church organizations for distribution within Sussex County.