So, next Saturday, Dec. 11, you'll be out shopping, getting gifts for loved ones, buying cards, stocking up on staple holiday fare ... what could be more in keeping with the spirit of Christmas than to share a little bit of the season's bounty with those less fortunate?
Mountain FM and The Bridge are making it easy for you to do just that with the fifth annual Miracle Marathon on Saturday, Dec. 11, in Grand Forks, Rossland, Trail, Nelson and, of course, Castlegar.
Infamous radio personality Drex, of the Drex and Johnson morning show, says this final push for donations will be what sees local food banks through the overwhelming demands of the Christmas season and, hopefully, beyond to the spring, long after people have forgotten about the spirit of giving that moved them months before.
“Food banks often run out of food after Christmas – people forget about them,” Drex said. “In Castlegar alone, Deb (McIntosh), with her fabulous volunteers, will set up trestle tables and assemble over 300 Christmas hampers ...if there's enough to go around.
“This is our final push, to ensure no one in any of our Kootenay Boundary communities goes hungry,” he added. “We need people to dig deep and make that push ... I don't want you to open your hearts or feel sorry for anyone. I want you to open your wallets and your pantries, for the sake of your neighbours and friends.”
Castlegar Community Harvest Food Bank coordinator Deb McIntosh said the Miracle Marathon is vital to the food bank's ability to help those in need, even through the leanest months of the New Year.
“The Miracle Marathon is huge for us. It not only brings in much-needed food, money and resources, it also increases awareness and educates those who still believe poverty only impacts a tiny segment of the community. That's just not how it is – a large portion of our community needs our help, and the Miracle Marathon will help us to be there for them.”
And of course, Drex and Johnson want everyone to have fun, so there'll be tons of neat prizes and swag ...including five return flights to Vancouver, generously donated by Pacific Coastal Airlines.
“They're terrific corporate citizens ...all I have to do is ask, and they always step up,” Drex said.
Miracle Marathon tables will be set up at the Safeway in Castlegar, the Save On Foods in Nelson, Overwaitea in Grand Forks and Ferraro Foods in Rossland and Trail.
“The need is there,” said Shaun Johnson, of Drex & Johnson infamy, who has participated in every Miracle Marathon since its inception five years ago. “It's extremely important for people to just chip in ... it doesn't take much.”
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