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Turkey hunt: Food pantry seeks donations for Thanksgiving meals

With Thanksgiving approaching, local organizations are holding events and seeking donations to help out Harvest for the Hungry food pantry in Ironton.

Last Sunday, the Ironton First Nazarene Church had a community concert with singing by tenor Isaac Duke Adams, the minister of music at New Jerusalem Christian Center in Ironton and the bond Proclaim, made up of former Gospel Harmony Boys vocalist Jack Hanks, former New Journey signature alto Nancy Click Banfield and former New Creation singer/songwriter Elizabeth Stamper.

“It was very, very good,” said Pastor Rob Hale, of the Ironton First Nazarene and a member of the board of the food pantry. “The community came out and the seats were full.

The annual event was put on by the Ironton Ministerial Association and brought in $1,508.10.

While that seems like a lot of money for turkeys, it only puts a dent in the 500 the pantry is trying to get to give to those in need.

The pantry buys in bulk so they can get turkeys for about $15 each.

Diane Porter, the director of Harvest for the Hungry, said she has enough donations for about 250 turkeys, about half the amount. the pantry needs

“We need 500,” she said.

National Wild Turkey Federation is making a donation of turkeys that they purchased by holding a gun raffle and other events. The group will purchase about 600 to go to various agencies and Harvest for the Hungry will get 75-100 turkeys.

“They are a great group, they do a lot of volunteer work and great stuff like that,” Hale said.

Hale said they will be seeking donations for the food pantry to make sure that no one goes hungry at Thanksgiving. The pantry gives out not just a turkey, but enough food for the whole meal.

“We really appreciate how they serve,” he said. “When you go there, you don’t just get a sack of groceries, they actually give you enough for a whole week,” he said. “That’s pretty cool. They are very loving and caring people and the ministerial association is happy to be hooked up with them.”

Porter said it is better for the food pantry if people make monetary donations for turkeys rather than purchasing them.

“We buy in bulk so we get a better deal,” she said.  To make a donation, contact Hale at 606-923-3538 or send donations to Harvest for the Hungry, P.O. Box 153, Ironton, Ohio, 45638.

Every year, the pantry serves over 17,000 people: 5,738 families, 2,785 senior citizens, 5,147 children, and 9,071 other adults.