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Ace Hardware Stores Across the Country are Giving Back to Their Communities

City Paint & Ace Hardware in Hoboken, N.J., donated more than 300 masks to local first responders.

Ace Hardware’s locally-owned stores are there to support the communities they serve when they need it most. What follows are some of the ways local Ace stores and their ‘red-vested heroes’ are doing what they can to help their neighbors.

A Vermont Ace retailer has been giving out free U.S. flags to anyone who shops local.

After social distancing mandates started limiting most businesses to curbside delivery, Gordon Winters, the owner of five Ace Hardware stores in Vermont, began offering free American flags out of his stores to anyone who said they have shopped local since the pandemic started.

Humboldt Unified School District (HUSD) in Arizona has been using more than 7,000 bags each week during their COVID-19 meal program and ran into an issue when their distributor ran out of bags. Prescott Valley Ace Hardware in Prescott, Ariz., stepped up and answered HUSD’s call for help and donated 48,000 bags to the school district totaling $1,000 worth of bags to the program.

Prescott Valley Ace donated 48,000 bags so the local school district could continue its meal program.

HUSD expressed their gratitude to the hardware store by posting on Facebook to thank the company for its donation and including a picture of part of the donation Ace made. With the help of Ace Hardware, HUSD has been able to continue to run the COVID-19 meal program.

Carter’s Ace Hardware, with multiple locations serving Lake, Orange and Citrus counties in Florida, is donating equipment to a local hospital to help in the response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The family-owned chain recently received a shipment of 3M P100 face mask respirators. Instead of putting them on the sales floor, they have been offered to AdventHealth Waterman, where the Carters hope they will be put to use by healthcare workers and first responders.

Cade Carter is the general manager of Carter’s Ace Hardware and also serves as president of the Central Florida Ace Dealers. After discussions with his father, Roy Carter, Cade said the family knew it was the right thing to do, given that there has been a shortage of face masks in the medical community.

“Talking with my dad, he wanted to get in touch with the local hospital to make sure first responders had everything they need,” Carter said in an interview with the local Fox affiliate. “We were blessed to have access to these high-demand items…so let’s pay it forward and help the community.”

Recently, York Ace Hardware in York, Neb., began a program to support local restaurants. “Eat Local/Save Local” is a campaign that will earn customers 10 percent off their purchase at York Ace Hardware when they order from a local restaurant and bring in the receipt.

City Paint + Ace Hardware in Hoboken, N.J., took to Facebook to announce a silent act of charity it had been doing all along. In recent weeks, the company managed to donate more than 300 masks to Hoboken University Medical Center, Hoboken Volunteer Ambulance Corp, HUMC Intensive Care Unit and the Office of Emergency Management Hoboken. The retailer also gave masks to many local nurses, homeless residents and the elderly in the community. 

An Ace retailer in Philadelphia donated hand sanitizer and masks to the Department of Health.

Amid the coronavirus pandemic, some Philadelphians — including the owner of a hardware store— have stepped out to answer the city’s call for donations of medical supplies for healthcare workers and families. 

“I’m really just concerned about people who need this stuff and don’t have access to it,” said Andy Siegel, who owns Ace Hardware at 20th Street and Fairmount Avenue. 

It took weeks to get his shipment of hand sanitizer and N95 filtration masks, so when he finally got them, he donated 1,000 bottles of hand sanitizer and 200 masks to Philadelphia’s Department of Health to go to the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a report on KYW newsradio.

“They have a lot of positive cases and these people have to go back home, where they are not positive yet and don’t necessarily have the resources to go anywhere else,” Siegel said. 

Siegel will sell several thousand bottles of hand sanitizer to the public at his store for $2.60 a bottle, giving priority to the most vulnerable. For every extra dollar donated, Siegel said he’ll donate another bottle to the Health Department. 

  Dave Swartz, owner of Davison Ace Hardware in Davison, Mich., doesn’t build things to make money. Instead, he considers himself a tinkerer who likes to build things to see how the science behind it works, writes Gary Gould for The View Newspaper Group. 

So, at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, when Swartz started making personal protection masks, he naturally wanted to find a way to sterilize those masks. This led him to design and build a UVC light box that will sterilize medical equipment like the N95 respirator masks used by healthcare workers. Swartz’s box has attracted lots of attention, including some from McLaren Flint, which has purchased the prototype for use at their facilities.

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