By Carol McCracken (Post 337)
Just before noon today, a school bus loaded with 91,869 lbs. of food arrived at Preble Street where volunteers were waiting for it to arrive. When it arrived, the dozen or so volunteers formed a long chain starting at the loaded bus door passing box after box of food to the next person in line until it was all inside Preble Street. It took about an hour or so to get the job done. “Stuff ‘The Bus” is the name of this 18 year old tradition said Chuck Igo, an early morning DJ for Y1009 radio station. He’s organized the food drive for the past four years.
“This our biggest food drive of the year for Maine’s biggest soup kitchen and pantry,” said Elena Schmidt, director of development for Preble Street and also a Hill resident. “We want to be sure that any one who is hungry can find the food they need whether it’s a soup kitchen or a food pantry. We are now working to end hunger, to find ways that people can support their families and themselves,” she said.
Igo began approaching schools and businesses in the area several months ago looking for donations of food. Sponsors came through with cash. Chuck cited many who gave to make this food drive a success once again. Classic Bus & Limousine supplied the bus collecting the food from different sources in the area. There were 8 major corporate contributors including Wright Express, Down East Energy, Cabot Cheese and House of Lights. Students from Longfellow School were generous. It took them 30 minutes to “Stuff the Bus” with their donations,” Igo said.
“THAT’S Thanksgiving,” he said.