A long-standing tradition of Warren countians sharing Yuletide joy with their less-fortunate neighbors returns for the 42nd year, but price inflation is showing its Scrooge-like face.
The Rotary Club of McMinnville, in collaboration with the Southern Standard newspaper, plans to ramp up the number of Share Christmas Dinner feasts this season, despite an increase of some 15 percent in the cost of the groceries compared to last year.
“Price inflation is a fact of economic life, and we are all trying to manage through this challenging time,” said Chad Graves, chairperson for the Rotary Club’s annual giveaway of food products, including a canned ham or frozen turkey, milk, eggs and non-perishable supplies.
The distribution will be Dec. 22 between 9 and 11 a.m. in the parking lot of Wholesale Discount Grocery (WDG) on the west side of The Strip (New Smithville Highway).
Student volunteers with the Warren County High School Interact Club and Community Interact will be at WDG Dec. 18, 1 p.m.) to pack the weighty boxes. The Rotary Club will be issuing up to 450 certificates to eligible recipients, some of whom may have to pick up their boxes shortly after the Dec. 22 distribution.
Each box will contain food products with a estimated value of $46.56, said Matt Hash, a veteran of organizing and operating the Rotary benefit.
“Since the beginning of Share a Christmas Dinner at the Southern Standard more than 40 years ago, this food supplement benefit has been generously supported by the community,” Ben Myers, president of the Noon Rotary Club, explained. “Rotary members have always been major contributors to the effort, but we need the support of the whole community to make this work from year to year,” he added.
“One hundred percent of the community donations go into the Share program,” Myers emphasized. “If we happen to receive more funds than are needed for the Share boxes, we may apply the excess to other feeding programs for the benefit of Warren County residents. One way or the other, contributions will go entirely to helping feed hungry children and adults.”
Questions may be directed to Rotarians, Graves or CK Cayce at (931)58SHARE. Tax-deductible donations may be mailed to The McMinnville Rotary Community Fund at PO Box 7001, McMinnville TN 3111. Share donations may also be dropped off at Cleaners Express, Security Federal Savings Bank or Graves Family Pharmacy. For PayPal donations, go to McMinnville RotaryCommunity Fund@gmail.com