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Ace concludes Helpful Places campaign

On Dec. 3, Ace Hardware surprised the Camp Fire USA North Central Montana Council in Great Falls, Mont., with a $10,000 makeover, completing the “New Faces for Helpful Places” campaign for 2008.

Ace awarded money and makeover services to a total of 10 community organizations over the last several weeks, each receiving a surprise visit from Lou Manfredini, Ace’s “Helpful Hardware Man,” as well as a group of area Ace store owners and managers.

The contest began in August, when the Oak Brook, Ill.-based co-op began receiving entries from community organizations in need of a facelift. The 10 winners were chosen from more than 2,600 entries.

The renovation projects will take place in early 2009, and each project will be led by Manfredini and a group of local volunteers from each local market.

In addition to Camp Fire USA, other winning entries were as follows: Santa Maria Urban Ministry (San Jose, Calif.); Rio Vista Center (Phoenix, Ariz.); Macon Teen Challenge (Macon, Ga.); The Salvation Army of Lee County (Fort Myers, Fla.); Chattanooga Rescue Mission (Chattanooga, Tenn.); Springtides (Cedar Rapids, Iowa); Kids Kicking Cancer (Detroit, Mich.); First Step Home (Cincinnati, Ohio); and The Little Angel Fund (Farmingville, N.Y.).

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