Moosomin places first in Smile Cookie sales in all of Saskatchewan

May 24, 2023, 8:36 am
Sierra D'Souza Butts

Principal Tammy Cole and students from MacLeod Penny Jeannot, Billee Kosier, Jessa Thorn, Hadley Miller, Anika Thorn and Casey  Caliwag thanked Moosomin Tim Hortons for their donation of $34,335 from Smile Cookie Week, which will go towards supporting the school’s playground project. <b>From left are,</b> Tammy Cole, Westman Tim Horton’s Owner Greg Crisanti, Tanner Bell district manager, Cherrie Caliwag store manager at Moosomin Tim Hortons, Nikki Romero and Jaspreet Kaur of Moosomin Tim Hortons.

Moosomin had the highest Smile Cookie sales ever for the community and the highest in the entire province, bringing in a total of $34,335 during Tim Hortons Smile Cookie week from May 1 to 7.

The community placed first in Saskatchewan and eighth across Canada.

All of the proceeds raised will be going to support the MacLeod Elementary School Playground Fund, to create a new inclusive playground at the north side of the school.

“It was pretty amazing to find out we placed first,” said Greg Crisanti owner of Moosomin Tim Hortons. “We were pretty excited and pretty happy. I always give credit firstly to our guests who are the ones purchasing the cookies.”

“As well as our hard working volunteers from our charity, as well as the hard work from the staff,” Crisanti said.

“It’s not easy getting those numbers, but it sure pays off when you see a number like that come up.”

Local businesses such as Nutrien and Celebration Ford matched Smile Cookie sales for one of the days during Smile Cookie week.

In addition, businesses in town such as Moosomin Dairy Queen, the Red Barn, Kari’s Kloset, the World-Spectator, Jeannot Electric, Borderland Co-op and others in Moosomin bought dozens of cookies for their staff in support of the campaign.

Crisanti said it is because Moosomin has such a supportive community that sales went so well.

“We have such a strong community in Moosomin, to see a location in a community our size pull number one in a province as big as Saskatchewan just shows you how much the community really pulled together when we needed it the most,” said Crisanti.

“Obviously last year with the funds raised for the hospital’s CT Scanner and then again this year, we just really have the backing of the entire community, the businesses and organizations coming together. It’s just amazing to see.”

Crisanti said he is glad the Smile Cookie campaign could help kick-start the school’s fundraiser.

“I hope they’re happy with it, I think it’s going to be excellent,” he said.

“Speaking with Principal Tammy (Cole), I think everyone’s happy with the results. We couldn’t picture a better outcome that’s for sure.”

MacLeod’s plan for the project is to build a new playground, and create a more inclusive and accessible play area for kids of all ages and capabilities.

The project would replace the existing playground on the north side of the school.

The estimated cost for the project is $150,000 for the initial phase of the playground, and up to $250,000 if the project were to include a gazebo as well.

“Our total amount would be around the $200,000 to $250,000 mark,” said Principal of MacLeod Elementary School Tammy Cole.

"The playground is about $150,000, but we really would like to achieve the gathering gazebo as well because it’s something we don’t have in our community.

“I think that parents would really appreciate it and would want to come and bring their kids. I also think it will be well utilized if people wanted to do a picnic and have shade. The teachers at the high school and at MacLeod will use it as an outdoor classroom. I want to see how far we can go.”

Smile Week brings people together
Aside from being able to help contribute to a local project, Crisanti was asked what are some of the other benefits that come from Smile Cookie week.

“Just seeing people inside the restaurant, as far as the volunteers, it really pulls our community together,” he said.

“I feel that our staff has a great time, they meet some new people and build connections there. Again, working together to set your goal to sell as many cookies as possible.

“It starts to become some fun competition for a great cause, but really working together. As hard of work it is and as busy as it is in our kitchens, it really pays off. It’s just a great community and team effort to make that happen.”

MacLeod School thankful for community’s support
Principal Cole said she was ecstatic to hear how much the campaign raised.

“I was shocked that it was that high and that it went over what we thought we could possibly raise,” Cole said.

“That was crazy to make over that $30,000 mark.”

Cole was asked why she thinks Moosomin was able to raise $34,335.

“As I said at the Chamber meeting, I feel that when our community gets behind a cause miracles happen and dreams come true and are achieved because they get behind something, our community just comes together.

“I look at all of the volunteers, we had volunteers from all parts of Moosomin, people that were retired, teachers to community members who signed up just to help volunteer and make cookies and box them. That part was amazing.

“It’s not just a fundraiser, it’s a community event that inspires people to give, volunteer, be community minded, and make a difference.

“Our community should be so very proud of its volunteer force, the amazing dedicated employees of the Tim Hortons and their owner. It’s a remarkable team effort and we are truly grateful to have been part of this inspirational movement.”

During the week, students from MacLeod went to the Tim Hortons in town to cheer on customers and encourage them to buy Smile Cookies. They wore T-shirts representing the school and made signs.

“It was just an awesome week, and to have our students be actively involved in the whole process was just wonderful because it just makes everything more real for them,” said Cole.

“They were so pumped and excited. They were helping, and making a difference, it was just amazing. I did not know what goes into a Smile Cookie Week, but I learned a lot and I think the kids did too.

“The students were proud and excited to try TO inspire people, then when they would see someone buy a Smile Cookie they would just feel the happiness. It was really amazing.”

Next steps for playground project
With the $34,335 raised from Smile Cookie Week, Cole said the school is one step closer to their goal for the project now.

“Now, we’re closer to $50,000 from fundraising. Things have come along and we’ve also had some other people come forth and decide to donate,” she said.

“The Moosomin School Alumni Association came and donated $5,000 last Tuesday. Rocky Mountain is donating $6,000 over the course of the next three years.

“The gifting keeps on coming, we’re pretty excited.

“We’re also going to do the Co-op Fuel Up if we can be one of the ones selected, and again, try to climb higher on our fundraising goal.

“As well, to try to access a few more grants is what my next plans are.”

Cole spoke about what the school’s next steps are for fundraising for the playground project.

“We’re going to have the first ever track meet we’ve had here in years on June 15, and we’ll be doing a barbecue hot lunch where the proceeds will go to the playground as well” she said.

“We’re just trying to do more fundraising types of things and keep the momentum building. The more we get, the closer we get to the goal. That’s the plan.”

Cole is thankful for everyone in the community who helped and donated towards the fundraiser.

“I just want to thank the community of Moosomin and the surrounding areas,” she said.

“I would love to be able to thank our match day people of Nutrien and Celebration Ford. We had two anonymous donations on the Celebration Ford Day, and our SCC bought on that match day, Kari’s Kloset bought on a match day.

“We had lots of community support, and just outreachings of great donations that really made the fundraiser achieve what it did.

“A great team of people all came together and look what we did. It was just amazing.”