2016 Fundraiser Raises Record Amount for the Fall Mountain Food Shelf

//2016 Fundraiser Raises Record Amount for the Fall Mountain Food Shelf

2016 Fundraiser Raises Record Amount for the Fall Mountain Food Shelf

Shattering last year’s fundraiser totals, the 2016 Harvest Hoedown event, organized by the Bensonwood Events Committee and supported by a large group of community businesses in and around the Walpole area, will provide much needed support to the Fall Mountain Food Shelf.  

Donations raised at the event exceeded last year’s total by 15%, reaching $10,000 which, combined with an anonymous matching fund, netted the Fall Mountain Food Shelf $20,000. A van load of food was donated as well.

According to Bensonwood’s Kevin Bittenbender;

“We estimate that there were about 250 people at the event. The weather really cooperated and we ended up raising somewhere around $10,000 this year, which is well above the record we set last year. In addition, the floor of the company van was entirely covered in groceries and the bags and boxes were a couple layers thick in some places. Mary Lou Huffling and the other volunteers at the Food Shelf were extremely thankful for all of the donations. Best of all, it seems like word is spreading about this party and all of the good that it does for the community.”

The event has grown significantly since the first Harvest Hoedown benefit in 2008 netted $1200. Moved by the generosity of all present, Mary Lou Huffling, the Director of the Fall Mountain Food Shelf, had this to say after the event:

“In a word, it was awesome! There was a beautiful sunset and most of all, all the people were beautiful. They were so excited to be there and participate. It was so heartwarming to see so much caring.”

Later, Huffling spoke about how these fundraising efforts provide critical aid to local area folks at all stages of life:

“Many of our neediest are older. A lot them had savings, but around here they never made big money and live on small, fixed incomes. They’ve had to go through their savings to pay for necessities. Everything for them is so hard now—food, rent, medical, transportation are all so expensive. They’re a proud group in difficult straits. This age group was not one to ask for help, so when they do, we try to be warm and welcoming. And then, at the other end of the spectrum, there are young families—working poor, unable to keep up with the high cost of living. For them, the Food Shelf helps to free up money to pay the bills.”

Elaborating further on the urgent need, Huffling said,

“We get calls from doctors asking if we can help their patients by delivering food to those who can’t otherwise make it into the Food Shelf. Many people may not be aware of this largely invisible group—our neighbors.”

As in years past, the 2016 Harvest Hoedown celebration and benefit was held at the homestead of Tedd and Christine Benson in Alstead, NH. A bounty of food, much of it donated by local businesses, was served outdoors; in addition there were activities for the kids and a raffle emceed by Bensonwood’s Jeffrey Starratt. Starratt had this to say about the event:

“I can’t overemphasize how much of a community event this was. The bulk of the raffle items and cash donations came from community businesses and individuals in and around the Walpole area. That generosity of the community and the attendees of the fundraiser was truly humbling.”

In summing up the benefit, Huffling added a personal note:

“I believe we’re here to help one another. I’ve gotten to know these folks who come into the Fall Mountain Food Shelf. These are good, hard-working people who need a hand;” adding, “if everyone cared, what a difference it would make.”

For those wanting to support the Fall Mountain Food Shelf, it is located at 122 State Highway 12A, Alstead NH 03602. To make donations directly or arrange to volunteer, please call (603) 835-2283 Monday-Saturday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.


2016 Harvest Hoedown Company Donors

The Bread Shed
Pete’s Farm Stand
Alyson’s Orchard
C & S Grocer’s
Shaw’s of Walpole
Taylor Welding
LaValley Building Supply
Coastal Forest Products
Raven Workshop
Hamshaw Lumber
Russell Supply
Fastenal of Keene, NH
Perkins Home Center
Harpoon Brewery
Hooper’s Golf Club
Diamond Pizza
Walpole Village Blooms
Walpole Village Salon
Walpole Village Tavern
Walpole Grocery
The Restaurant at Burdicks
Duo-Fast Northeast
Vermont Custom Cabinetry
Multi-Weld Services
Foard Panel
Kapiloff Insurance
Annette Dey Engineering
Unilux (Murray’s)
Huber Engineered Wood Products
Rogue Valley Door
Intus Windows

2017-02-16T14:17:15+00:00 September 21st, 2016|0 Comments