8 Reasons Why You Should Donate/Help The Devastation In Gatlinburg, TN, Caused By The Wildfires

8 Reasons Why You Should Donate/Help The Devastation In Gatlinburg, TN, Caused By The Wildfires

The wildfires in Gatlinburg, TN have caused such tragedy and devastation, that it is our duty to help in any way we can.

Hopefully you have all heard about the devastating tragedies going on around the Southeastern part of the United States, particularly Gatlinburg, TN, regarding the out of control wildfires. Here are a few reason why anyone not affected should find a way to help. At the bottom of this list I will provide a link to a website with a list of ways to donate, so please read on.

1. Gatlinburg, TN, is a beloved winter vacation spot for people from all around the world. This small, yet beautiful town is filled with family oriented attractions and amazing scenery. This one little town has enough Christmas spirit to compete with the big NYC. However, because of the wildfires, much of the beautiful scenery, attractions, and uniqueness in this town have been damaged greatly or are completely destroyed. We should all try to donate so that this beautiful place continues to be everyone's top pick for their annual winter vacations.

2. Because this town harbors so much Christmas spirit, the holidays are one of the biggest financial seasons for them. Think of all the business owners and employees who will suffer because their place of business has burned to the ground. We should all try to donate so we can bring back the businesses that have been lost or damaged.

3. Christmas is just around the corner, and because of these wildfires, countless families have lost their homes and everything they own, including their newly bought Christmas presents. Imagine the suffering these families are enduring through these next few months, through the holidays, which is supposed to be the best time of the year. Let's all try to contribute to making their Christmas a little more enjoyable in this time of tragedy.

4. For all you animal lovers out there, let's consider the wildlife lost in these fires. Thankfully, the Ripley's Aquarium was safe and no animals were harmed, but what about the animals with no place to go? The countless trees that burned to the ground served as habitats for dozens of animals. More than just people have lost lives and homes. Wildlife will be greatly affected by these wildfires and have no voice. Let's not forget our furry friends when we decide to help.

5. Christmas is the season of giving. What better cause to give to? These people, animals and town have lost everything. Let's help make their season merry and bright, like most of ours will be.

6. Most people are already online this time of year shopping, and most stay on their phones 24/7. That is how easy it is to donate. You can donate to the American Red Cross simply by getting online or sending a text message.

7. Think about if this happened to you. What would you hope for from other people? I am a true believer in "you get back what you put into this world." You put good into the world, you get good back out of the world.

8. We can't forget the people currently helping the situation. The firefighters, National Guard, police officers, EMT, volunteers, American Red Cross, etc., that have valiantly risked their lives and sacrificed their time and safety to help the cause. They deserve so much thanks, gratitude, and most importantly, help from those that can!

So that's just a few of the many reasons why you should help/donate to help Gatlinburg in this time of crisis. Please look below to see how you can donate/help, and please consider this. Oh, and thank God for all your many blessings, your safety, and your family, because this can happen to any of us, at any moment.


Cover Image Credit: The Tennessean News: Kim Hester

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7 Signs You're From the 732

Only the best part of New Jersey.

If you're from New Jersey, you know how badly the state's looked down upon by outsiders (thanks a lot, Jersey Shore). But you know that all of those false accusations aren't true- the Garden State is your home and only you're allowed to make fun of it. Although Jersey's small, there are different regions and everyone thinks that their's is the best. Here are seven signs you're from the 732, AKA the best part of Jersey:

1. You know that Central Jersey is a place.

One of the biggest arguments is whether or not Central Jersey exists. I live in the middle of New Jersey, so it's pretty funny when people say it's not a real place. I'm not from South Jersey, and definitely not from North Jersey. Also, it's close to both Philadelphia and New York, not just one or the other. Perfect location.

2. Everywhere you go, you see a Wawa.

Legit everywhere, and you go there 24/7. All hail the holy grail.

3. Surf Taco means a lot to you.

Every time I come home from being away at school the first place I go to eat with my friends is Surf Taco. Even when I am home, Surf Taco's always on my mind. Who doesn't love a good taco with chips? P.S. I highly recommend their Teriyaki Chicken Taco, you won't regret it.

4. You go to all the summer concerts.

There's really nothing more fun than summer shows outside, and you already know that PNC Bank Arts Center and Stone Pony Summer Stage are the hot-spots. 'Tis the season of tailgating and enjoying a good show with your friends.

5. Two words: Pork. Roll.

I don't care what Chris Christie has to say, it's pork roll. Quite honestly, Taylor Ham just doesn't sound right. And what's better than a pork roll egg n' cheese on your favorite bagel? Nothing.

6. You live close to the beach...

Spring Lake, Manasquan, Asbury, you name it. You know these areas and where all of the good food spots are in each of them. Living so close to the beach makes for the perfect summers, but with summer comes the bennies.

7. ...So you can easily spot a benny.

If you're from Jersey and you don't know what a benny is, you most likely are one. Bennies usually come in packs; they bring lawn chairs and tents to the beach, wear socks and sandals, and have the "Jersey accent" because they're either from New York or close to.

Cover Image Credit: Wikimedia commons

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5 Great Things About The Holiday Season In South Florida

Who said you can't go to the beach in the middle of December?


This is my first holiday season in college, and I have many friends who have come here to Florida Gulf Coast from out of state. I am an in-state student coming from Palm Beach, FL, where the sun is out year-round, and we take the boat out on Christmas evening. Peers from Chicago or New Jersey have asked me how it feels during the holiday season, and even though we don't have snow or a stash of sweaters to whip out from the back of our closet, we do have beautiful weather and many exciting events around the state that make the holidays in SoFlo very special.

Here are 5 things to look forward to in South Florida this holiday season!

1. Year-round Warm Weather!

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SoFlo's "winters" consist of sunny afternoons and an occasional day below 60. Other than that, our weather stays moderately warm and beaches available every day of the year!

2. Christmas at Disney World!

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According to a Walt Disney Resort blog, Disney displayed nearly 8.5 million Christmas lights throughout the season, around 1,300 wreaths, and about 171.6 MILES of ribbon. Talk about dedication.

3. Beachy, Coastal Decorations!

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4. Wealthy Areas Who Get Extra AF

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As many know, South Florida is a big hub for retirees. With that being said, a good amount of folk have a grand amount of time to decorate for the holiday season. Many neighborhoods collaborate and create a magical walkway for all to stroll through and enjoy beautiful lights.

5. Tropical Santas!

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