Thanksgivingneeds growing

Published on Thu, Nov 18, 2004 by Jack Kintner

Read More News

Thanksgiving needs growing

By Jack Kintner

The Blaine Community Assistance Program’s annual Thanksgiving Basket effort is underway and with increasing unemployment, the need this year is even greater, according to program director Brent Brentnall.

Last year the program provided 150 baskets, essentially boxes with a complete turkey dinner and side dishes valued at $51 apiece. This year, Brentnall said he expects to give out 175 baskets and has again asked the community for financial help. All the money contributed goes directly toward buying food, Brentnall said, making this local charity one of the few places where individual contributions all go for the purpose to which they were given. The modest program expenses are borne by the Peace Arch Christian Ministerial Association.

People wishing to give financially may mail donations to the CAP Thanksgiving Fund, P.O. Box 339, Blaine, WA 98231, or donate at a number of different collection sites around town. For technical reasons it’s not possible for people to give a turkey directly to the program, Brentnall said.

Families wishing to qualify for the meals should contact the Blaine Family Service Center at 332-0720 as soon as possible.

For some years this program was closely identified with former Blaine deli owner Annie Magner, who first organized downtown restaurants to feed thanksgiving dinners to the needy in 1997. Magner’s still involved as a member of Blaine’s Free Church Unitarian, “one of the smaller congregations in town,” she said recently, “but each year we bake several dozen pies for this effort. It’s something we can do to support the program.”

Magner plans to be at the old Radio Shack store at the Blaine International Mall for a CAP work party next Tuesday, November 23, loading boxes. “We can sure use some help,” she said, “shuffling food on Tuesday afternoon from the Cost Cutter grocery, and also on Monday, picking up potatoes in Lynden, and Wednesday morning, picking up the milk that Hill’s Chevron donates. We have to wait for the last minute on that.”

Baskets will be distributed on Wednesday, November 24, from 1 until 5 p.m. at the former Radio Shack store. People wishing to volunteer or for more information, can contact Magner at 961-1642.