Granby church, nonprofits team up to prepare holiday meals for those in need |

Granby church, nonprofits team up to prepare holiday meals for those in need

Tonya Bina
Grand County, Colorado
By Tonya Bina/Sky-Hi Daily News

It was “chaotic organizing” Saturday ” as one volunteer put it ” as members of Lord of the Valley Lutheran Church in Granby, Colorado, scurried about filling 95 boxes with Thanksgiving foods to be delivered to those in need.

“Now we’re going to buns and bread!” organizer Dick Norman called out to an assembly line of about 20 workers just finishing up the turkey round.

Stuffing, a 10- to 15-pound turkey, canned sweet potatoes, cans of mushroom soup and mandarin slices, two types of holiday breads, a pumpkin pie, potatoes, celery, onions, oranges and apples were all packed into each box.

Boxes crowded the entire back half of the nave ” on the floor, along the window, and on several rows of seats.

When Kyger Mintken’s mom asked if he’d rather go out and play halfway into the morning, the 8-year-old declined. He’d been bouncing around helping adults fill boxes ” going from produce, to breads, to turkeys, to pies. He and dad John had the system down.

Every year for the past five, Lord of the Valley Lutheran Church has accomplished this task of filling food baskets supplied through Food Share America, a nonprofit food-purchasing program.

The nonprofit passes on cost savings in the “power of group buying.” Volunteers help sort, package and distribute food the organization buys in bulk, resulting in grocery costs of about 50 percent of regular food bills.

Twice per year, in November and December, the church campaigns for, assembles and distributes free holiday-meal groceries for those who struggle to afford such meals.

Congregation members, the Mountain Family Center and various donors in the community (including a large donation this year from Century 21) help to purchase the groceries, and church members and the Center deliver the packages directly to residents.

It’s expected at least 120 holiday meal baskets will be assembled and delivered again at Christmastime to those in need.

For those interested in supporting the Holiday meal packages, $27 buys one family a Christmas meal that includes ham, cornbread, apple pie and various fruits and vegetables.

” Tonya Bina can be reached at 887-3334 ext. 19603 or e-mail

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