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“Needy Children’s Auction” hits 49 years of serving children in need of clothing during Christmas

CHEROKEE, IA (KTIV)- As a child, many people remember the feeling of waking up to Christmas gifts underneath the tree on Christmas morning.

But some families cannot afford presents.

So one man from Cherokee, Iowa, took it upon himself to organize an effort to bring Christmas clothing to children in need.

89-year-old Stan Sitzmann’s love for Christmas began when he was a boy.

“The believing of Santa Claus that is the one thing if ma and pa don’t spill the beans about what’s going on, most of the kids that you have will believe that there is a Santa Claus,” says Stan Sitzmann, Founder of Needy Children’s Auction.

Growing up with 11 siblings sometimes meant no presents underneath the tree at Christmas.

“And how would you like to buy from them twelve, you know and I knew it was hard for them even though we were farmers we had some tough times,” says Sitzmann.

Because of his love for Christmas and children, Stan created “Needy Children’s Auction” for families who can’t afford clothing for their kids.

“It’s good to see kids at Christmas and their eyes light up that they got something for Christmas,” says Sitzmann.

Every year, parents pick up the phone to get on the auction list.

“They know if they’re hurting and need some clothing for their children they certainly call me in a hurry,” says Sitzmann.

Around 20,000 dollars is raised at the auction each year, and more than 170 children in Cherokee receive help.

“They know that I’m here that what I’m doing and they start asking about October when they figure they can get on the list,” says Sitzmann.

K-Mart is typically where the clothes come from.

The day after the auction, parents are able to meet Stan at the store to pick out their children’s clothing.

“And I got one more year to go to meet the 50 years I said I was going to hit so I’m pretty happy about that,” says Sitzmann.

Next year may be his last year organizing the event. But the event will continue under different leadership.

The auction will be held Saturday, December 15th at the Brightside Lounge in Cherokee.

Hannah Norton

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