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Mornings unPHILtered - In search of volunteer Santas
Chad Avret
Chad Avret
    The first guest on Wednesday's “Mornings unPHILtered” show was Chad Avret, the operations division manager for the Statesboro-Bulloch County Parks and Recreation Department. Avret and his staff operate eight parks encompassing more than 213 acres. The department also oversees 28 buildings at the parks.
    Avret spoke with host Phil Boyum about the “Santa's Calling” program, in which Santa actually calls kids and talks to them at their homes. Avret also said they're looking for more volunteers to help call as Santa.
    The calls will be made from the Honey Bowen Building by the group of volunteers. If people want to help make the calls between Dec. 4-7, contact Shelley Salter. Salter can be reached at 764-5637 or by emailing her at
    Avret talked about another program the rec department runs at Christmastime: Holiday Helping Hands. Started by the staff last year, it allows people to help families get things that they might not otherwise have at Christmastime. The primary sponsor of the program is the local Lowes. Last year they gave away 11 Christmas Trees with all the trimmings, and they're hoping to give away 12 this year.
    Avret said the staff puts up trees, ornaments, and other trimmings together for needy families, who are able to enjoy these trees for years to come. The staff and volunteers actually go out to homes and put everything up for them. Volunteers are needed, and they should get in touch with Broni Gainous, at 764-5637 or email her at
    The next guest on the show was Barry Boone, the founder and CEO of two money-saving Web sites and He actually started out with a personal Web site, on which he shared the good deals he had found. People kept calling him up and saying that he was so good at this he should do it professionally. Both sites started in 2000.
    Boone told Boyum that he has employees whose sole job is to check the status of everyone of the coupons his site lists, and other people whose job is to make sure coupons listings are removed when they expire. He said while at first businesses didn't like everyone using their coupons, now businesses know that if their coupon isn't visible to people, customers will go to someone else's business whose coupon is out there for them to use.
    Asked when the best deals will be available, Boone said that once these items sell out, they might not have a lot of inventory and not restock, rather than have lots of inventory on hand with a reserve for later. So, he advised if you find a really good deal now, buy it. Boone advised people to check out what was available and get out early, or even go online to the retailer's website and get the same or maybe even better deal online, getting a jump on everyone else.
    “Mornings unPHILtered” airs live Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. on and also simulcast on WWNS-AM 1240 on the radio. You also can listen anytime at on
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