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January 13, 2017 06:22 PM

Brandon Community Bands Together To Feed Students

Brandon, SD

Thanks to the generosity of the Brandon community, the Wild Game Feed put on by the Brandon Valley Optimist Club earlier this week had a record year. The numbers are in and the fundraiser for school lunches served 600 diners over two nights raising $10,000. 

Over the last 11 months, 800 students who don't qualify for free and reduced lunches in the Brandon Valley school district were gifted nearly 7,000 meals thanks to the annual Wild Game Feed. 

"These people have such big hearts and they want to make sure we're seeing all of our kids, whose parents might not have the funds to help them pay for their meals, they just want to see that these kids are fed. I'm all about feeding the kids," Anderson said. 

Child Nutrition Director Gay Anderson will be getting even more help feeding kids this year. That's because Todd Winkel with the Brandon Valley Optimist Club says a record $10,000 was donated by diners earlier this week. 

From meals at Brandon Valley schools to the backpack program, all the money donated is going to kids right here in the Brandon community.

"The community itself just loves to help take care of itself and that is demonstrated by the generosity of everyone that showed up that night," Winkel said. 

While exotic treats like eel and frog legs draw a big crowd and make for a good story, the fundraiser is solving a serious problem for families that struggle to pay for school lunches. 

"We are instructed to cut them off but we find means, however we can, not to do that. The funds from the wild game feed and our wonderful optimist club allow me to go and say, ok now we can go and put that into that family's account. There's some very grateful people," Anderson said. 

Grateful to be part of a small, tight-knit community that cares.

This was the ninth year for the wild game feed. Winkel says they couldn't do it without the help of local restaurant 212 The Boiling Point.
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