FARMINGTON — Farmington Emblem Club 460 President Shannon Smith has chosen Buttons for Babes as her charity for the year.

Along with saving buttons and helping to sew bracelets Tuesday during a workshop held at the United Way of the Tri-Valley Area, Smith said the club will make a donation to the project that will help area children in April after she leaves office.

Emblem Club members from across the state gathered two gallons of buttons over the last month or so, she said.

Smith was joined by Farmington members Debbie Holt, Diana Oliver and Peggy Alexander to sew colorful buttons on to an elastic ring Tuesday.

Chris Bourassa started making the one-of-a-kind bracelets with recycled buttons after her husband lost his job. She wanted to continue volunteering and giving back to her community. Sales of the bracelets helped support homeless children living in a Rumford group home.

The bracelets were a hit. As sales increased, so did the needs of local children. Last summer, the United Way encouraged volunteers to help make the simple, colorful bracelets.

Barclays of Wilton matches every dollar earned by the bracelets. Funds are still used for homelessness and children in crisis throughout the Greater Franklin County area.

Bagged kits include 30 regular buttons, 10 small buttons, a three-quarter-inch elastic bracelet and a signature button, denoting it is an original Buttons for Babes bracelet, said Trish Wurpel, project coordinator for the United Way. 

The Emblem Club is also preparing for its annual Valentine’s Day dance, planned for 7 to 11 p.m. Feb. 9 at the Farmington Elks Lodge with entertainment by “Legends.”

Proceeds help the group support several charities such as the Buttons for Babes program, Smith said.

Tickets for the dance, $20 per couple, are available by calling Smith at 778-4726 or at Mooseville in Farmington.

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