Holiday Cards 4 Our Military Challenge nets over 100,000 donations

  • A card donated to the Holiday Cards 4 Our Military Challenge to be sent to members of U.S. armed forces in time for the holidays.

  • The Holiday Cards 4 Our Military Challenge led to more than 100,000 cards being signed and sent to members of all five branches of the armed forces in time for the holidays. What began as a small family tradition around Thanksgiving for Laura Landerman-Garber's family has become a nationwide effort to show care and appreciation to the warriors who protect our freedom around the holidays when they can't be home with their families. Courtesy of Laura Landerman-Garber—

  • Sal’s Pizza in Concord served as a home base of sorts for donations for the Holiday Cards 4 Our Military Challenge. Courtesy of Laura Landerman-Garber

  • The Holiday Cards 4 Our Military Challenge in New Hampshire led to more than 100,000 cards being signed and sent to members of all five branches of the armed forces in time for the holidays. Photos courtesy of Laura Landerman-Garber

Published: 11/21/2019 6:24:32 PM
Modified: 11/21/2019 6:24:22 PM

What started as a family Thanksgiving tradition 16 years ago has turned into a full-fledged nonprofit that sends more than 100,000 holiday cards to members of all five branches of the military.

Laura Landerman-Garber of Hollis first handed out blank holiday cards to her family at Thanksgiving and asked them to write messages to the country’s troops.

“It was to be their ‘ticket to turkey,’ ” Landerman-Garber said on her website.

It continued to grow with the help of local businesses and politicians, and now the effort has gone national, she said.

Landerman-Garber has collected more than 100,000 holiday cards from around the country that will be mailed to deployed troops as part of the Holiday Cards 4 Our Military Challenge.

Commissioner of Education Frank Edelblut sent an email to every education commissioner of education in all 50 states, challenging them to join in, Landerman-Garber said.

As a result, 35 states plus cards from Canada have poured into the Landerman-Garber home, she said. Additionally, cards have been signed by almost every presidential candidate as they have come through New Hampshire.

Locally, Sal’s Pizza in Concord served as a home base of sorts for card donations, keeping a box along with some blank cards in the restaurant for people to sign and submit, Landerman-Garber said.

It takes just a moment or two to pen a message or draw a picture, making the card challenge an easy feel-good project for all ages, Landerman-Garber said.

“This journey has taken me places I never expected, meeting stars I only saw on TV or in the movies,” Landerman-Garber said. “But the real stars are those who serve our country and the families who support them.”

While there was an October deadline to ensure cards would make it to the troops around the world in time for the holidays, cards are still welcome.

“I promise that they will get to our heroes for the holidays,” Landerman-Garber said.

Check out the Holiday Card Challenge on Facebook or militaryholidaycardchallenge.com for the guidelines.




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