Cinergy Field concession vendors granted Christmas wishes

The Cincinnati Enquirer

Those who toss us peanuts and pass out soda at Cinergy Field had their Christmas wishes delivered in a unique holiday program.

Sportservice, whose employees staff the concession stands and work as vendors during Reds and Bengals games at Cinergy Field, wanted to give their workers something special.

So the food service company asked each of their 300 part-time employees, many of whom have relatively low incomes, to submit a Christmas wish to management.

“We have a great bunch of people who work hard all year around,” said Joe Sims, a spokesman for Sportservice. “Some of them don't have the means to afford a lot for Christmas, so we wanted to see if we could lend a hand.”

“We kept all employee requests anonymous to help make them feel more comfortable in asking,” he said.

More than 45 workers submitted wishes, he said.

Marie Sutliff, business manager for Sportservice, said “I think the thing that touched us most about the program was how simple most of the requests were. Many people asked for Christmas meals or coats for their kids. Most of the requests were for gifts for others.”

Among the wishes were clothing for family members in nursing homes, money to help buy toys for children at the local orphanage, food for YMCA's battered women's shelter and holiday meals for relatives.

The wishes were granted Monday during a ceremony at Cinergy Field.

“There is nothing that makes the holidays more satisfying than giving,” said Mr. Sims.

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