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Chamber kicks off food drive for Five Loaves Food Shelf

Members of the community and local businesses enjoyed a catered meal at Westfields Hospital as part of the New Richmond Area Chamber of Commerce Food Drive Kickoff event on Monday, Nov. 4. (Photo by Jordan Willi)

After the success of last year’s Food Drive Kickoff competition, Lisa Woletz and the rest of the New Richmond Area Chamber of Commerce decided to move up the timeline of the competition and get even more donations to the Five Loaves Food Shelf this year.

“Last year’s event was overwhelming; the local businesses rallied together and brought hundreds of pounds of food that we picked up and delivered to the food shelf,” Woletz said. “Last year, we did the food drive around Christmas time, so this year we are doing it earlier in an effort to fill the food shelf earlier in the season.”

The chamber’s Food Drive Kickoff got underway Monday, Nov. 4, at Westfields Hospital with a small get together of local businesses and community members. The food drive runs from Nov. 4 to Wednesday, Nov. 20.

“Our goal is always to better the community and make sure that those in need are sustained,” Woletz said. “Anyone can be involved, they do not need to be a chamber member to be involved in the drive. All they have to do to sign up is give the chamber a call and let us know they are participating.”

Once, signed up with the chamber, businesses are tasked with collecting food, essentials and cash to be donated to the Five Loaves Food Shelf at the end of the competition.

“The food shelf is a big part of New Richmond and there is a lot of need here in New Richmond,” Woletz said. “So, as a community-driven organization, we wanted to give back locally.”

On Nov. 20, the chamber staff and board of directors will go around to the all the participating businesses to collect the food. After the food is labeled and taken to the food shelf, the chamber will weigh each business’ donations to decide the winner.

To help increase their chances of bringing in the most food for the food shelf, a few of the local businesses will have special offers for customers who bring in an item for the food drive, including Fantastic Sam’s and the New Richmond Theatre.

“If you come in to Fantastic Sam’s on Nov. 10, you get a free haircut as long as you bring in a nonperishable item or $10 for the food drive,” Woletz said. “The New Richmond Theatre is doing a free bag of popcorn for every donation that they get. So the businesses are getting into it.”

The event was catered by Ready Randy’s/R&D Catering and was sponsored by the chamber’s Platinum Members, including Family Fresh Market, Bremer Bank, WESTconsin Credit Union, Westfields Hospital, Royal Credit Union, First National Bank and the <I>New Richmond News<I>/Rivertowns Multimedia. Westfields Hospital was able to collect the most food in last year’s competition.

For more information, contact the chamber office at 715-246-2900 or at

Jordan Willi
Jordan Willi is a reporter for the New Richmond News. Previously, he worked as a sports reporter at the Worthington Daily Globe in Worthington, Minnesota. He also interned at the Hudson Star Observer for two summers and contributed to the Bison Illustrated sports magazine at North Dakota State University.
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