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Food pantry receives annual potato donation

Thanksgiving dinner sign-up dates set

Harvest for the Hungry food pantry received its annual delivery of potatoes Thursday morning from the Society of St. Andrew, a nonprofit organization that helps feed the hungry while leading others into the lives of Christian Community Service.

The potato delivery is part of the organization’s Potato and Produce Project, which salvages potatoes and other produce rejected by retail markets or potato chip companies due to minor imperfections in size, shape, sugar content or blemishes on their surface.

This is the fifth year that Harvest for the Hungry has taken part and received a truckload of potatoes through the Society of St. Andrew project, which are then distributed to several other food pantries in the region.

“We got 42,000 pounds of potatoes,” Diane Porter, director of Harvest for the Hungry, said. “We give about half of them away to other food pantries and organizations because I can’t distribute them fast enough here before they end up going bad.”

Besides Harvest for the Hungry, others that benefitted from the program include South Point United Methodist Church, Trinity Assembly of God church in Coal Grove, the Chesapeake Community Mission Outreach, the Lawrence County Juvenile Center, Sandhill Church in South Shore, Kentucky and the Ironton City Mission.

“I’m really tickled to be able to do this once a year, and everyone likes potatoes,” Porter said. “And the Society of St. Andrew doesn’t cost us anything, so it’s all free.”

Porter also thanked the city of Ironton for providing a forklift to assist with the potato delivery.

This year’s Harvest for the Hungry Thanksgiving dinner sign-up dates are set as well, and Porter said the pantry has a goal of giving away 500 Thanksgiving dinners this year.

Sign-up dates are 9 a.m.-noon Tuesday, Oct. 3, 5-8 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 5, and 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 7 at the pantry, located at 120 N. Fifth Street in Ironton.

When people sign up for Thanksgiving dinners, Porter said they would be given a card with a time to show up on the giveaway date, which is Tuesday, Nov. 21.

In order to sign up to receive a Thanksgiving dinner, a valid ID and proof of Lawrence County residency is required.