Crossville Food City is teaming up with local artists to present the Harvest for Hunger June 21. Local artists will provide hours of entertainment, with lots of activities for the kids and food on sale. Donations will also be taken at the event to support Cumberland Good Samaritans food programs.
Debbie James, Food City human resources coordinator, said, "We hope this will be the first of a yearly event. We're going to ask that people make a donation or bring canned goods to support Good Samaritans."
The event comes shortly after a March food drive at Cumberland County Food City locations raised $2,000 for Good Samaritans' senior care feeding program.
"We're trying to come up with additional ways we can help the people of this community," James said.
James thanked Food City Manager Shain Arnold for his support of programs that benefit the community and help meet the unmet needs of seniors and families, as well as the support of the Food City company, which makes it possible for Food City locations to support vital feeding programs.
The event will feature Carrie Hassler performing at noon, with additional performances by local artists Joennen Kettler, Jenny Patrick, Dawniel Mann, Terry Henderson and Anthony Woolbright, and many others. There will be a bounce house for the kids, with lots of free games and face painting. Food City will have a smoker cooking all kinds of food, with proceeds benefitting feeding programs in the community. There will be burgers, hot dogs, chips and drinks available throughout the event.
The Harvest for Hunger will not only support the senior care feeding program, but also the summer family feeding program.
"We've known for years this was an issue in our community," said Mickey Eldridge, executive director of Cumberland Good Samaritans. "We started the senior feeding program a number of years ago to address the unmet needs of senior citizens in our community who are experiencing food crisis."
Nearly one in five seniors may be going hungry in Tennessee, according to the National Foundation to End Senior Hunger, which found 18.79 percent of seniors in the state faced the threat of hunger in 2011, the last year data is available.
Harvest for Hunger will also support the the summer family feeding program, which helps provide families with food during the summer months when children are not in schools. In Cumberland County, 47 percent of students qualify for free or reduced price meals.
"Many students have been eating breakfast and lunch at school," said Eldridge. "When school is out, those families struggle with the additional cost of providing food and groceries during the day."
Eldridge thanked Food City for their long-time support of Cumberland Good Samaritans feeding programs, noting the business had been a partner in the senior care program since its inception more than 10 years ago.
For more information about Good Samaritans programs and how to help, call 484-3225.
Harvest for Hunger begins at noon June 21 in the parking lot of Food City on West Ave. Bring a lawn chair and enjoy an afternoon of music.