Blessed Sacrament students deliver cookies to say ‘thanks’ to neighbors

CHARLESTON — A box of cookies may not make up for years of morning and afternoon school traffic and recent building renovations in the Westwood neighborhood, but Blessed Sacrament Catholic School wanted residents to know it appreciates their patience.

Some Blessed Sacrament students and their parents went door to door Jan. 30 and handed out about 100 boxes of student-baked cookies to households near the school. It was one of the Catholic Schools Week activities for the school.

Blessed Sacrament is undergoing several years of rebuilding and revitalization, and that combined with the normal weekday traffic when parents deliver students in the morning and pick them up in afternoons creates a lot of traffic in the neighborhood.

“This is our way of thanking the neighbors for putting up with the carpooling and supporting us in all we do,” said Sister Judy Hollar, principal of Blessed Sacrament School.

She said parents are asked to be courteous and not block the neighbors’ driveways.

But she knows that, especially with construction projects that reduce on-campus parking, the neighbors put up with a lot of inconvenience.

“It’s been very hard and we just want to say ‘thank you,’ ” she said.

Students baked the cookies at Charleston Cookie Co. on James Island. The company provided the ingredients and the ovens and the students supplied the labor. They baked three kinds of cookies and packaged them a dozen to a box, said school spokesman Jack McGovern.

At least one child from each class was chosen for the cookie handout patrol.

The students were advised to introduce themselves and to say the cookies are a gift to the neighborhood.

A card that came with the cookies expressed “our heartfelt thanks for being patient neighbors during our renovation and new building project.”

The cookie giveaway is the first of its kind for the school, McGovern said.

Robin Zemp, who for 16 years lived on St. Teresa Drive, just across from the school, accepted his gift from 11-year-old sixth-grader Glenn Lewis. “It’s nice,” he said.

Asked if the cookies assuage the years of enduring traffic generated by the school, Zemp said, “No, but I appreciate the gesture. It makes me feel better.”

Zemp said the traffic is actually worse during Sunday Mass than during school days. “The school is trying very hard not to inconvenience us,” he said.

A few doors down, Carolyn Wham said the gift was thoughtful. “I think it’s wonderful.”

She said she doesn’t mind the traffic, adding that she has grandchildren attending the school.

John Dimitri of Morton Avenue said the cookies are a nice idea but don’t solve traffic woes.

“I would love to see them demonstrate the same enterprise in resolving the horrendous traffic congestion that inundates this neighborhood on a twice-daily basis as was employed in baking and distributing the cookies,” he said.