MASSENA — Milk, dairy items, and fruits and vegetables will be on the menu when a food distribution event is held from 9 a.m. to noon June 14 at Massena Central High School.
The Trunk to Trunk Food Distribution is a collaborative effort with Malone Mayor Andrea Dumas, the U.S. Department of Agriculture Food Program, Glazier Packing and the Massena Central School District. St. Lawrence County Legislator Rita Curran, R-Massena, has been coordinating the effort locally.
Ms. Curran said she and Ms. Dumas went to Washington last summer to take part in an information session. When the food distribution opportunity came up, Ms. Curran was asked if she wanted to be involved.
“When it came up, she said, ‘Hey, if we can get this grant, would you give some of this food away in St. Lawrence County?’” she said. “She’s trying to spread it around to help everybody, which is very nice of her.”
Ms. Curran said it was an opportunity to distribute USDA food that otherwise might be thrown away.
“We have hungry people. I thought it was the best thing to do,” she said.
Three stations will be set up. The first station has one trailer of milk — 20 pallets, holding roughly 4,500 gallons of milk. The second station will have dairy boxes containing sour cream, cottage cheese, string cheese, yogurt and a gallon of milk. Station three will have 1,500 produce boxes containing heads of lettuce, romaine lettuce, mini-carrots, onions, potatoes, oranges and apples.
The plan calls for participants to pick up the food in the traffic circle at the high schools. Social distancing regulations will be followed, with participants driving from station to station and having food placed in their trunk by volunteers.
“We’re going to hand it out at the curb,” Ms. Curran said.
She said many people will be helping, such as members of the Elks Lodge, Rotary Club, school and legislators. She said Glazier Packing Company is donating trucks, and Town Supervisor Steven D. O’Shaughnessy and Councilman Samuel D. Carbone Jr. will be helping to enlist more people.
“It’s a good group of people that are going to help us out,” she said.
The distribution is open to anybody. Representatives from Ogdensburg, Waddington, Louisville, Stockholm and Norfolk will be coming to Massena to pick up items that can be distributed in their communities.
“We’re just locating it in Massena,” Ms. Curran said. “We’re trying to serve the public. That’s our job.”
She said they would like to find individuals who could write grants so they would have more opportunities to distribute food. That might allow them to include items such as meat and cheese.
“If we can get better at this, perhaps we would know we’re going to have a steadier supply,” she said.