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You might have missed the story that ran on a Christmas weekend and was placed on the back page of a section. But kudos to the editors at this paper who got the wire story in the paper--somewhere, anywhere. It was too good a piece to skip. Especially this year.

Dateline: Brainerd, Minn., smack dab in the middle of the state with 1,000 lakes. The city itself is surrounded by lakes and ponds. And we imagine it's just about cold this time of year. But the story is one to warm your heart:

Somebody pulled into a Dairy Queen on Dec. 3 and paid for his order--and the order of the people behind him in line. The cashier, Darla Anderson, rang up both tabs and thought that'd be the end of it. Short and sweet.

Then the people next in line paid for the people behind them. And those people paid for the people behind them. More than two days, and 900 cars later, the chain kept going.

"I've seen 'pay it forward' chains that went on for about 20 cars," said Tina Jensen, the restaurant manager, "but never anything like this."

Hour after hour it continued. At one point, as social media took over, some folks had the idea to give even more, in case somebody pulled in who couldn't keep the chain going. (Some people, it was reported, ordered an ice cream cone but paid $50 or more for the car full of kids behind them.)

It finally came to an end when that extra money dried up and a man couldn't cover the big order behind him.

How about that Christmas spirit, eh? With all the bad news that seems to fill the paper every day, we're glad the wire editors gave us a reason to smile Sunday morning.


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