DuBOIS — An upcoming DuBois Central Catholic fundraiser will help with costs associated with the DuBois City Police Department’s plan to add a K9 police dog to its force to help fight the drug epidemic in the community.

The fundraiser was initiated and is being organized by Angela LaBenne, a DCC parent, who was experiencing one of those days when she kept hearing the same topic over and over again via the media and conversations with family and friends.

That topic of those conversations was how the DuBois City Police hope to acquire a K9 police dog sometime during the first quarter of the new year.

LaBenne said she was hearing so much about the K9 Unit that she knew it was not just a coincidence but a call for action.

To herself, LaBenne said, “’I get the message. I hear you loud and clear,’” referring to what she says was her nudge from God.

And then she started planning the benefit for the K9 Unit.

The fundraising event will be held Saturday, Dec. 14, beginning at 9 a.m. and ending at noon, in the cafeteria of the DuBois Central Catholic School, located at 200 Central Christian Road, DuBois. There will be pictures with Santa and Mrs. Claus, a cookie sale and gift wrapping.

Children will also have the opportunity to make ornaments and color pictures. Hot dogs, snacks and drinks will be available for purchase.

Pictures will be available for $10 per child (2 photos), digital download and release sent to a provided email address. There will be cookies for $5 a dozen, gift wrapping by donation, children ornament crafts, and coloring pages as well.

At noon and after Santa’s departure, the movie Polar Express will be shown in the First Commonwealth Performance Art Center at DCC. Cost will be $1 per person, with snacks and drinks also available for purchase.

All proceeds of the fundraiser will be given to the DuBois police to aid in its efforts of acquiring a K9 police dog. The dog’s main objective will be to assist in finding illegal narcotics, but it will also be trained in search and rescue.

The K9 officer and his handler, Officer Zayne Rhed, will also make visits to local schools.

While LaBenne was hearing news about the DuBois K9 Unit, DuBois Public Library Director Rebecca McTavish was busy planning for the Elf on the Shelf event to also be held Saturday, Dec. 14.

Someone called the library to check on when the Elf on the Shelf event was being held and McTavish told them the hours.

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It was decided that it would be a great idea if DCC and the library joined forces.

People can choose to see Polar Express or go directly to Elf on the Shelf Street Fair on Scribner Avenue with the Reitz Theater. Pictures will be taken with Santa and one of his favorite elves. Those attending can enjoy the Elf Scavenger Hunt, crafts and stories with Mrs. Claus at the DuBois Public Library and much more from 1-4 p.m.

Those attending the street fair can stay or return later that evening to attend adult holiday festivities organized by the Downtown DuBois Inc. group.

“We all need to support our area and the area needs to support the K9 Unit,” said LaBenne. “The K9 Unit will protect our officers, assist with the drug problem here in DuBois and surrounding areas, search & rescue and the K9 will be coming into our schools.”

For more information about the DuBois K9 Unit benefit, call LaBenne at 814-590-0005.

For questions about Elf on the Shelf at the DuBois Public Library, call McTavish at 814-371-5930.

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