HARPURSVILLE – This weekend, six area bands and local community members have organized a food and cash drive to benefit Afton’s Community Hunger Outreach Warehouse (CHOW) program.
New Berlin’s Police Officer in Charge Dominick Commesso said he and a group of local citizens came together in 2009 to do something about the growing need they began seeing through their emergency service jobs.
“There have been occasions, as a responder, a volunteer firefighter or as a police officer, that you see some things. You go into some homes and you see the parents trying to care for their kids. You look around at what they have, at what they don’t have, and you know that there’s a pretty good chance they just don’t have the means to have a dinner each night. I’m not just talking about the bottom of the barrel here, I’m talking about real people who just can make ends meet even when they’ve got work. Normal people, good people,” said Commesso.
Commesso and a group of volunteers put together a CHOW drive in 2009 working with the Afton Methodist Church’s food pantry, which collects and distributes the donations into their local goodwill network.
Last year’s event brought more than 150 people to donate around $800 and more than 1,000 pounds of food, but this year organizers are asking for a $5 donation instead of canned goods.
“What the food pantries do with five dollars can provide for more people than the typical food donation. They collect together a large amount with other non-profit programs and they basically buy food in bulk. For five dollars, they can get a lot more food than the average person could at a supermarket, plus with money you don’t have to worry about it going bad. It basically allows the churches to buy food without having to worry so much about storage or expiration dates,” said Commesso.
Starting at noon on Saturday at the Central Hotel and Tavern along Oak Hill Road in Harpursville (also known as the Nineveh Junction), six area bands will be playing Southern Country Rock style music. A list of bands performing include: The Ring of Fire Band, The Blue J’s, The Cardboard Cutouts, Chops, The C.O.D. Band, and The Short Change Band..