The Lowcountry has hard-core Clemson fans who enjoy every Gamecock failure. And hard-core Gamecocks who love to see the Tigers fall short.
The same goes for Democrats and Republicans, I-526 supporters and opponents, and cruise ship defenders and skeptics.
But once a year, the entire community seems to be on the same side. If there is someone who wants to see the Good Cheer Fund fail, he hasn’t spoken up.
Day by day in the weeks approaching Christmas, readers of The Post and Courier check the bottom line of the yearly campaign to raise money to make Christmas happier for people in need.
They are touched to read who has donated to the fund — little children giving their allowance and readers memorializing their loved ones. The gifts are great and small.
And readers are quietly cheering for the good guys — that the final total will top the previous year’s, and that more hurting people will find comfort in the help these donations provide.
This year’s Good Cheer Fund had some tense moments. Donations lagged until close to the end. But ultimately it raised $361,770.21 — topping last year’s total and second only to 2007’s all-time high of $368,763.87.
That means more of the hungry were fed, more of the homeless were sheltered and more of those without hope of a happy Christmas felt the warmth that came with every donation.
The Good Cheer Fund raised $1,797 during its first year in 1927. The total amount given — and distributed through designated local charities — is more than $6.8 million.
There are no administrative expenses, so it all goes to do what donors hope it would do: bring good cheer. The Coastal Catholic Charities, Carolina Youth Development Center, Lowcountry Food Bank, Association for the Blind, Star Gospel Mission and Salvation Army make sure of that.
So the next time the Citadel Bulldogs meet the College of Charleston Cougars on the basketball court, make your pick and enjoy the rivalry.
But when you’re thinking about the essence of the place we call home, think about what the Good Cheer Fund says about the Lowcountry. It is generous, kind and loving.
And think about how nice it feels to be on the same team playing for a good cause.