‘Overflow the Opera House’ food drive benefits Our Place

BELLOWS FALLS — It will be food instead of films when the Bellows Falls Opera House becomes the stage for the annual Overflow the Opera House food drive to benefit Our Place Drop-in Center Thursday, Sept. 22.

Beginning at 8 a.m. and continuing to 4 p.m., board members and other volunteers will be on hand curbside to accept donations of food and funds to stock the food pantry at Our Place.

Employees of Chroma Technology and Sonnax are also playing a role by holding in-house drives and providing onsite help. KOOL-FM radio will be broadcasting live to encourage listeners to support the effort.

New this year is an online site that allows anyone to fill a seat at the Opera House with a $25 donation.

“We're hoping to fill all 500-plus seats in the theater with either a bag of groceries or a $25 donation,” said Our Place executive director David Billings. “That $25 represents a food box for a family.”

Donations can be made at bit.ly/682-food anytime or by stopping by the Opera house during the drive.

Billings said monetary donations are more important than ever because so many of the people Our Place helps are people who are employed yet live at the poverty level - people who are facing increases in the cost of housing, transportation, and food and don't qualify for other assistance programs.

“We have better leverage with our food dollars than the average shopper,” he said, “so donating money stretches the dollars even further.

“That's very important in Vermont,” he said, “because food costs here are 25 percent more than the national average.”

Information about Our Place and the drive can be found at ourplacevermont.org, on Facebook, or by contacting Our Place at 802-463-2217.

Subscribe to the newsletter for weekly updates