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KARE for Kids gears up for holiday season

Moonshine Festival on horizon

POSTED: September 21, 2008 5:04 a.m.
File photo/

Bobby Allison served as the Grand Marshal of the Mountain Moonshine Festival last year. The festival is held annually in downtown Dawsonville as the main fundraiser of the KARE for Kids organization.

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KARE for Kids, the organization that provides for Dawson County’s children in need, is now gearing up for the upcoming holiday season.


Last year, KARE for Kids provided Christmas presents for more than 200 families and 550 local children through initiatives such as its annual fundraiser, Dawsonville’s Mountain Moonshine Festival. This year’s festival is scheduled for Oct. 25 and 26.


“We hope that we can help more children and families this year,” said KARE for Kids President Calvin Byrd.


Each winter holiday season, KARE for Kids takes on the task of identifying families in need in Dawson County and making sure the families are equipped with what they need to have an enjoyable Christmas holiday.


“We give each child at least two toys, new clothes, sometimes shoes and coats, whatever the parents tell us the kids need. And we provide the family with all the food and trimmings they need for a full Christmas dinner,” Byrd said.


Throughout the year, KARE for Kids also provides over 300 local children with clothing, medication, eyeglasses and school supplies.


Byrd said the organization may have to work harder this year with a dwindling economy and more families needing assistance, but he said KARE for Kids volunteers will push forward to insure happy holidays for the children.


“We’re here for the kids. That’s what KARE for Kids started out doing and that’s what we’ll continue to do,” he said.


The volunteer-based organization puts together Dawsonville’s largest event of the year, the Mountain Moonshine Festival to raise money for its holiday initiative.


“Finding the volunteers has always been an issue for us until last year, which was one of our best years ever,” Byrd said.


He said he would love to see a group of new volunteers step up and join the worthwhile organization for the sake of Dawson County’s most needy children.


“It’s a lot of work, but very rewarding to see the parents be able to come in and give their children the Christmas they deserve,” Byrd said.


For more information on KARE for Kids or to volunteer, call (706) 216-KARE, or e-mail Calvin Byrd at


E-mail Michele Hester at


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