On Saturday, a Cache Valley woman named Monica Rockwell Jensen posted a giveaway of two orange hammocks to the Facebook group “Logan Classifieds.” She captioned it with the words “giving train.” This post has led to hundreds of other giveaways.
Brook Carlisle has been moderating the classifieds group for about three years now. When she saw the first post, she had no idea how big it would get.
“I actually contacted her and thanked her and made sure that she was the first one, because it exploded,” Carlisle said. “So there were hundreds of posts. It was really hard to try to find the very first one. So I wrote Monica and she wrote me and said that she has just been in tears, how wonderful this has just snowballed all over the valley.”
Carlisle said there have been hundreds of giving train posts since then. About 2,000 people have asked to join the group since the trend started on Saturday. Normally, the group gets about 35 requests on a good day, which makes this almost ten times more requests than they get in an average week. The trend has also spread to other classified groups on Facebook.
“It’s kind of cool, because I saw it in the Logan classifieds first, and now I’ve seen it in, like Tremonton, and it’s up in Bear Lake now, and over in Soda,” Carlisle said. “So it’s just crazy that it’s spreading through all these classifieds. It makes kind of wonder, like, how far is it going to get?”
The giveaways vary from local business giving away services to individuals offering small gifts. They gifts include turkeys and other food offerings, free photoshoots from local photographers, gift cards to community businesses, and even a tattoo from a local artist.
“I think that the reason that it snowballed so big and fast is just the fact that everybody was willing to give a little bit, just to try to help anybody out,” Carlisle said. “I think that that’s pretty much what the Christmas season is about.”