Ellsworth’s ‘Christmas in July’ under way
For the past 18 years, Ellsworth Heating & Cooling has given away free air conditioning units to the neediest and most deserving residents in the area.
And after a year where the promotion’s name was changed because of COVID, the 53-year-old business is going to give three deserving residents a replacement of their old, unreliable units with brand new equipment.
Will Barnes, president of Ellsworth, said the idea has always been to give back to the community that has supported them for decades.
“We just want to help the community. Do a little something more for them. We started by giving one air conditioner away. We did that for 10 years, and ever since we’ve been able to give away three,” Barnes said.
Over the years, the criteria have changed. It used to be just the luck of the draw. Now, people are nominated, by either themselves or someone else in the community, who have done something special.
There are some universals, however. The existing unit has to be at least eight years old.
A new central air unit is not cheap. Including installation, a new three-ton unit runs between $5,400 and $6,400, Barnes said. Lennox and Trane are two of the suppliers of the units, with a third still to be determined.
Barnes said submissions have been ongoing and that traffic has been strong, which to him is a testament to how the community has supported them.
“It’s picked up the last two weeks. We’re getting a few every day which is good,” Barnes said. “We feel blessed that the community has been there for us for 50 years. It’s the right thing to do.”
People can submit nominations until the end of the month. A winner will be selected the first week of August. Unlike last year, when COVID cancelled the winner’s luncheon held at Ellsworth (though not the giveaway), there will be one this year.
Those who want to nominate someone (of themselves) for a new unit, they can go online to www.ellsworthair.com or stop by their office at 1905 N. Tamiami Trail Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.