The annual Oktoberfest celebration in Hickory, Oct. 13-15, will once again feature the construction of a Castle of Cans to help feed those in need in Catawba County. The county wide canned food drive provides added supplies to soup kitchens and agencies that help families in need in our communities. For the second year, Food Lion is donating 5,000 pounds of canned goods to the castle through its Food Lion Feeds hunger relief initiative.
"As a proud community partner, Food Lion is pleased to again support the Castle of Cans and help feed the hungry in Hickory," said Dale Oelkers, Food Lion's Director of Operations for the Hickory area. "Through our Food Lion Feeds initiative, Food Lion has committed to donate 500 million meals by 2020 because we believe that no one should have to choose between dinner and rent or gas and groceries. We look forward to continuing to serve the Hickory community for many years to come."
Castle of Cans coordinator Jan Knotts said, "We are so appreciative of the boost that Food Lion's donation gives to the Castle of Cans. For the past 18 years, students of all ages around the county have donated the cans to build the castle. Seeing the generosity of a local grocery chain can only help them with their enthusiasm for the food drives in their schools."
The Susan L. Coleman Castle of Cans is the charitable community service component of Oktoberfest. Hickory Downtown Development Association sponsors the event and St. Alban's Episcopal Church coordinates the food drive. Most of the cans are collected through drives conducted by students in public and private schools throughout Catawba County, but drives are also held at some churches, businesses and community organizations.
If you would like to donate to the drive, you may bring cans at any participating school or to two community drop off locations: Taste Full Beans Coffeehouse on 2nd Street NW in Hickory and the Habitat ReStore on 8th Street Drive SE across from Home Depot.
Last year 17,411 pounds or 8-3/4 tons of food was distributed to the following agencies: The Corner Table of Newton, Eastern Catawba County Cooperative Christian Ministries, Exodus Homes, The Family Care Center, Greater Hickory Cooperative Christian Ministries, The Hickory Soup Kitchen, The Salvation Army, and Second Harvest Food Bank.
For information about Oktoberfest, please contact 828-322-1121. For information about the Castle of Cans, please contact Jan Knotts at 828-495-3029.