Turkey demand calls - Coeur d'Alene Press: Local News

Turkey demand calls

Food banks trying to meet Thanksgiving requests

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Posted: Wednesday, November 13, 2013 12:00 am

Area food banks are calling on some turkeys to come through to meet Thanksgiving demand.

About 2,800 families registered for a holiday meal through Community Action Partnership (CAP) in Coeur d'Alene during the signup period in October. The number is comparable to recent years, said Carolyn Shewfelt, food bank manager.

"We're already making our (Thanksgiving) bags up," Shewfelt said.

She said about 1,000 turkeys will be needed to meet the demand. Due to limited freezer space, next week would be the best time to bring bird donations to the food bank at 4144 W. Industrial Loop.

The meals will be available for pick up Tuesday through Friday, Nov. 22.

Other donations needed at CAP for Thanksgiving include canned fruit and vegetables, potatoes and evaporated milk.

The Post Falls Food Bank expects to serve between 600 and 700 Thanksgiving meals. Thanks to a grant, the agency added a large commercial freezer to take in more frozen donations.

Sherry Wallis, food bank manager, said about 300 more turkey donations are needed to meet the holiday demand.

"The good news is that the demand has stabilized after increasing in recent years; the bad news is that it has stabilized at the highest number ever," Wallis said. "We're hoping the turkeys fly in."

Other items needed for Post Falls' Thanksgiving baskets include gravy packets and evaporated milk.

About 125 Rathdrum families have applied for a certificate to be redeemed on a Thanksgiving meal through the Rathdrum Food Bank, while the Spirit Lake Food Bank expects to provide meals to about 55 families. Those numbers are similar to Thanksgiving demand in previous years.

Managers at those food banks say that money donations, rather than food donations, are better due to limited storage space. Tax-deductible donations can be sent to the Rathdrum Food Bank at 8027 Main St., Rathdrum, 83858. Spirit Lake Food Bank donations should be sent to: P.O. Box 432, Spirit Lake, 83869.

Area food bank managers said recent food drives in the community have gone a long way toward the holiday demand.

Press carriers recently collected 9,023 pounds of food for area food banks. Boy Scouts collected 7,845 pounds for Community Action Partnership and 3,108 for Post Falls.

River City Chiropractic collected 130 turkeys in exchange for its services, while Alliance Title collected 6,488 pounds of food. The "Let's Give Hunger the Bird" turkey drive hosted by StanCraft Boat Co. featuring businesses and friends of the Post Falls Food Bank collected 186 turkeys last weekend.

"Food that comes in during the season of giving is essential to get us through early spring because after the holidays donations go flat," Wallis said.

Shewfelt said recent food drive donations have been down compared to previous years, but she's confident that holiday demand will be met.

"Our community always rises to the occasion," she said. "It's willing to take something off its own table to share with people."

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