Food pantry’s fall fest brings community together
Families picked out pumpkins, played on the playground, gathered near the stage and some danced to the tunes performed by Seeking Satellites during the West End Food Pantry’s Fall Fest Community Jam on Sunday.
“Today we are bringing the community together and showcasing the Eldred Township Community Center,” said Karena Thek, executive director of the food pantry.
Pantry volunteers handed out tickets for pumpkins, hot dogs and apple cider. Children received goody bags with candy.
“We are having fun. She loves the music. The band is doing a great job,” said Michelle Meixsell of Saylorsburg.
Her 2-year-old daughter, Reagan Meixsell, danced around to a song after playing on the playground.
Eagle Scout Tyler Mann recently gave all the playground equipment a fresh coat of paint and replaced deteriorating benches with new ones, Thek said.
Pantry volunteers, along with staff from Little Gap Landscaping, have cleaned up and replanted The Eldred Garden.
There are four sections divided by pavers the landscapers put in.
“The pizza garden has tomatoes, basil, oregano and peppers. The fairy garden has flowering bushes. The Grinch garden has plants that stay green all year. The butterfly garden had so many monarchs on it. It was unbelievable,” said Thek.
The PVHS class of 2014 had put in the butterfly garden. It was not touched in years and had become overgrown and full of weeds, Thek said.
Some attendees came in their Halloween costume, including Seeking Satellite’s drummer, Chris Pohorence.
“We play rock, pop and alternative. We do covers and are working on original music,” said lead singer Steven Maas. “We have been bouncing around to different festivals.”
Other band members are: Miguel Franco, lead guitar; Lewis Leiterman, bass guitar; and Jason Springer, sound technician. Band members are from Monroe County.
Among other tunes, the band played Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” and Guns N’ Roses’ “Sweet Child o’ Mine.”
At the request of the children in his family, the band’s encore was a few verses of “Wheels on the Bus.”
Thek said she has been watching the band progress over the past three years.
Her stepdaughter, Emily, is married to Maas.
Girl Scout Troop 50818, which meets at Pleasant Valley Assembly of God, had a table with informational packets.
“This troop is high school students, but we are looking for girls of all ages,” said Troop Leader Emily Krpata. “We provide financial aid, scholarships and do a lot of projects in the community.”
Thek thanked Dale’s Concessions for providing the hot dogs and cider; Bimbo Bakeries USA for donating all the rolls; Borger Farms for donating some 300 pumpkins; St. Matthew’s UCC youth and parents for helping to pick the pumpkins; and Seeking Satellites for performing.
“I think today was a success. We brought a lot of different people together. We will likely do this again next year,” said Thek.