PIQUA — The holidays were kicked off in high spirits at Hartzell Propeller on Friday, as the staff received the enthusiastic assistance of select students from Piqua Central Intermediate School.
In order to participate, PCIS fifth graders were instructed to write an essay on the topic, “What the Holiday Season Means to You.” Each essay had to detail what the student could do to spread kindness and goodwill during the holidays, and how their effect of their actions would make them feel.
Twenty-six winners were selected to attend.
“We look for good content and try to pick out the best from each class,” said Hartzell sourcing manager Jennifer Hughes.
In his essay, fifth-grader Rashad Pope expressed the importance of “helping homeless people and orphans.”
I feel that they would need help, because they don’t really have people to care for them,” Rashad said. “They could use things to have a good Christmas, like food and presents.”
Fifth grader Ethan Stone shared that he wrote about “helping homeless people and giving them something happy for the holidays.”
While at the Hartzell Propeller facility, participating students built gingerbread houses, engaged in window and cookie decoration, wrapped presents, constructed ornaments, and decorated the Hartzell Christmas tree with the help of a hydraulic lift.
A tour of the facility was also offered, followed by a complimentary lunch and the reading of a Christmas story.
According to Hughes, the event has become an annual tradition borne of a partnership that Hartzell has now maintained with schools in the community for decades.
“Hartzell used to have a partnership with South Street School,” Hughes said. “When that school closed, it went to Bennett, and we did something we each of the grade levels. When they all combined with Piqua Central, we adopted the fifth grade. We found that this is a way to reward those who are trying hard in school. They get to come here, see our facility, and spread some holiday spirit.”
Hughes felt that the ongoing partnership is mutually beneficial, stating, “There’s a lot of need in the city of Piqua, so giving back any chance we can is always great. I also think it’s great for the kids to come here and see what we have to offer as well, and see that there are great companies to work for in their city.”