Note of appreciation: Vergennes Food Shelf thanks Lions and all who helped

In this season of sharing, the Vergennes Community Food Shelf has many to thank for helping keep the shelves stocked and hundreds of Addison County larders supplied. This past year alone close to 1,300 people, old and young, came through our doors for meat, milk, eggs, bread and so much more. They represented almost 500 households and 6,600 visits from 25 Addison County towns. Volunteers from St. Peter’s Catholic Church, St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, the Vergennes Methodist Church, the New Haven Christian Reformed Church and our own church members at the Congregational Church of Vergennes keep the lines moving every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.
November and December are especially hectic. This year we coordinated with the Vergennes Lions Club to provide local families with 28 baskets of Thanksgiving fixin’s. The club did the lion’s share though. We just gave them the list and cans of pumpkin and cranberry sauce. Thank you, Lions!
The Vergennes Rotary Club also brought us more than two dozen turkeys, and one very special donation of 21 turkeys came personally from Jerry Niksa, who each year supplies us with birds for roasting. His gift of fowl was matched by the Vergennes Shaw’s. Thanks to this amazing generosity, we now have enough turkeys (67 at last count) to give out for Christmas.
The thank you list gets longer every year.  Hannaford and Shaw’s have provided unsold frozen deli meats, outdated bread and a fridge full of desserts. The Halloween cakes were especially memorable.
This year we needed another freezer to hold all the largesse, and WOW Toys came through with a new Kenmore. They also donate dollars, along with countless individuals, the Lions and Rotary clubs, local churches and schools. The generosity is overwhelming. Bags of nonperishable food come to us from all over the community, and all summer and fall veggies and crates of apples from local growers and backyard gardens fill our coffers.
We who work at the Food Shelf, including director Many Ann Castimore, THANK ALL WHO CONTRIBUTE — food and funds — to our community in need. Also, we hear many “thank yous” from those who come in to pass on to you.
Speaking of needs: Toiletries (toilet paper, shampoo, tooth brushes, soap, etc.) and soups are in demand every month.
Jeanne Peters

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