Lions Shopping Spree winner scoops up $10.99 worth of groceries

For 29 years, San Juan Lions Club has raised funds for their scholarships by selling raffle tickets for a Shopping Spree.  The amount of groceries gathered by the winner in the four-minute run through King's Market  hit a high of $2,007 in 2018 when second-time winner Shahn McGuire donated her prize to the Food Bank. In 2019, the total hit a record low, $10.99. 

This year's San Juan Lions Shopping Spree winner Rikki Swin, center in white, all but skipped the trip around King's Market. Swin bagged only a $10.99 sack of coffee so nearly all of the money raised from ticket sales would go to Lions' scholarship program. Also pictured, from left, are Lion Bruce Galton, Swin's shopping helper Darvis Taylor, turkey winner Boo Boo James, Lion Jim Carroll and Lion Andrew Popovich. Matt Pranger photo

On Tuesday, November 26, 2019 winner Rikki Swinn selected one bag of coffee for herself and asked that the Lions Club put the rest of the raffle funds towards  scholarships. The cost of the food is subtracted from the raffle total, with the difference going to scholarships awarded the following June. This year the Lions sold $3,385.90 worth of tickets according to San Juan Lions Treasurer Bruce Martin.

Swinn was also a winner in 2015, collecting $892 worth of groceries and donating some to the Food Bank. Swinn bought $100 worth of tickets (120 tickets)  as she does every year.

She decided to skip the trip down King's aisles so more the funds raised by spree ticket sales would go towards the Lions' scholarship program. "The can do so much more with it," she said. She requested the savings be used specifically for a vocational-technical scholarship.

"It was a total act of selflessness," San Juan Lion Jim Carroll said. "I'm overwhelmed."

On Saturday, November 23, Blair Low, daughter of Beth Low, granddaughter of Dwight & Judy Ware pick the winning ticket. For the last two years, Blair would look forward to walking by "Talbot" the stuffed Lion Mascot with Blair giving Talbot a hug. It was only fitting Blair came down to Kings Market on Saturday evening to stir up the tickets, with her eyes closed, and pick the lucky winners.

Boo Boo James won a turkey (12-14 LB) as did Food Bank become winner of two more turkeys where ticket buyers wrote in Food Bank on their tickets.

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