Area Businesses Get in the Holiday Spirit

December 18, 2013 Updated Dec 18, 2013 at 9:32 PM EDT

By Elizabeth Carey

December 18, 2013 Updated Dec 18, 2013 at 9:32 PM EDT

'Tis the season to shop, look for bargains and to donate to charities. Many area businesses are allowing customers to do all that in one shot.

The average person makes 24 percent of their annual donations between Thanksgiving and New Year's, according to research from the Center on Philanthropy.

Some businesses recognize that trend and are leading charitable causes this month. Channel 7 and the Basil Family Dealerships just led a successful toy drive for Toys for Tots. And now others are joining in the holiday spirit.

At Potter's Field, in South Buffalo, when you buy a $25 restaurant gift certificate, and donate a toy for Toys for Tots, you'll get a second certificate free.

"Every year, we do a gift certificate program - buy one get one. It's that time of year where everyone is out trying to get a gift," said Chef William Anderson. "We might as well give back to the community that supports us.

The program at Potters Field runs through the holiday.

A different program, City Dining Cards, features a deck of cards that are restaurant coupons. The company presented more than $4,500 to the Food Bank of WNY earlier this year from those sales.

Other retailers are asking customers to round up their bill for charities.

Salvatore's is donating proceeds from photos with Santa this year.

Studies show that average donations are higher at holiday time.

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