By Ivan Raconteur
LESTER PRAIRIE, MN Instead of collecting treats this Halloween, three Lester Prairie girls plan to use the holiday to collect food help others in their community.
This will be the third year for the event that was started in 2006 by Ashle Lukes and Alicia Kuhlmann.
The girls decided they did not need the candy, and came up with the idea of going door-to-door collecting non-perishable food items for the McLeod Food Shelf as a way to give something back to the community instead of taking things away.
This year, Lukes, who is in the eighth grade, and Kuhlmann, who is in the ninth grade, will be joined by Lester Prairie junior Tawny Knudtson. All of the girls are members of the Bergen Busy Bees 4H Club.
“We know times are hard, but all it takes is one item,” Lukes said.
In addition to their door-to-door collection on Halloween, the girls hope to set up drop boxes at local businesses, including the Prairie Market, Angvall Hardware and Mercantile, and First Community Bank in Lester Prairie.
Lukes said last year, she had people come up to her after Halloween and say they had donations ready but she had missed them or hadn’t made it to their house. The boxes will provide another way for people to donate their items.
People can also drop off items at the Lukes residence, 23 Maple Street North, in Lester Prairie.
After Halloween, the girls will load up the food items and deliver them to the McLeod Food Shelf in Glencoe.
“Our goal is to collect at least 300 pounds of food this year,” Lukes said, adding that this would be slightly more than they have collected in other years.
“We are trying to involve as many people as possible,” Lukes said. She has been trying to recruit other students to help with the collection.
“It may not seem like much,” Ashle’s mother Reada Lukes said, “but every little bit helps.”