Food service workers in the Bridgman, New Buffalo and River Valley school districts have stayed busy since in-person classes ended on March 13 due to the coronavirus pandemic.
With the “regular” school year coming to an end, plans are being made to continue some sort of nutritional support through the summer.
Food service worker Vicky Looney said the three times a week distributions (11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Monday, Wednesday and Friday at both New Buffalo Middle/High School and at the Elementary) are set to continue through June 29.
After that Water’s Edge Methodist Church will sponsor a summer-time program featuring food distribution centers in New Buffalo (for the latest, check the district’s website and social media sites).
On May 29, the New Buffalo distribution included 25-pound boxes of USDA Farmers to Families program mixed fresh produce filled with various veggies, oranges, apples, tomatoes, green peppers, asparagus and more.
Looney said the prior week’s box also contained butter, bread and eggs.
Future produce boxes will be handed out on Wednesday or Friday for the next few weeks along with other items.
On June 1 Duncan donated 100 yo-yo’s that were distributed with meals.
The New Buffalo Superintendent’s Facebook page reported on June 2 that “In the month of May, our Food Service Department served 10,876 meals.”
The Bridgman Public Schools are slated to continue the current emergency feeding system (from 5 to 7 p.m. every Wednesday drive-up style in front of the High School) until June 30.
After June 30 the 2020 summer feeding program is scheduled to begin utilizing the same format until Aug. 12.
The Bridgman Public Schools also announced that as of June 2 it would be opening the public tennis courts, the track, and the playgrounds at the elementary and middle schools.
“Continue to practice social distancing measures and good hygiene. The equipment and facilities will not be sanitized and you are using the equipment and facilities at your own risk.”
June 5 was slated to be the last distribution day under the current River Valley food distribution system (Mondays and Fridays as follows — Sawyer Trinity Church, 11 am to 11:30 am; New Troy Community Center, 11:45 am to 12:15 pm; Galien Old Grocery Store Parking Lot, 12:30 pm to 1 pm; Three Oaks Elementary, 1:15 pm to 1:30 pm; Hidden Harbor Villas, 1:35 pm to 1:50 pm; Oakview Estates, 1:55 pm to 2:10 pm).
The last Blessings in a Backpack distribution until school resumes was on May 29 with double food and extras such as beef stew, ramen noodles, Vienna sausages, egg noodles and boxes of cereal.
River Valley Superintendent Will Kearney said that starting on Thursday, June 11th, meals will be distributed at River Valley Middle/High School from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Parents will be given seven days of breakfast, seven days of lunch and seven days of milk per child. Distribution will continue until Thursday, August 13th.
Parents are requested to stay in their vehicle, and the meals will be handed to them by staff.