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September 21, 2017 06:03 PM

The Barrel House Owner Hungry To Help

For the past few years, a KELOLAND restaurant owner has been cooking up different ways to give back to the community. 

Mark Fonder, who owns restaurants in both Brandon and Sioux Falls, has donated thousands of dollars in proceeds to the backpack lunch program in Brandon from his annual wild game feed. 

Now he and his staff have put a smorgasbord of ideas together to help hungry children in the Sioux Falls School District, too. 

Barrel House kitchen manager Jesse Severson has had a lot on his plate lately, but it's all for a good cause. 

Next month, the Barrel House is going to kick off a huge fundraiser to help pay for school lunches for needy families in Sioux Falls.

"We are going to have inflatables, silent auction, a live auction, two hog roasts, I just got two 275 pound pigs donated from one of our food vendors," Severson said. 

Attendance at the event will be through a freewill donation, but they're hoping families have an appetite to help young children at the same time. 

"If these kids are in school listening to their stomachs growl, how are they listening to their teachers?," Severson said. 

Severson is passionate about this cause, because he speaks from experience; he grew up on the free lunch program. 

"So I take it very personal and so does our owner Mark Fonder to make sure each one of these kids gets a meal they need, if it's the only meal they get that day," Severson said. 

Now, they're hoping their customers are just as hungry as they are to help out. 

"We want over $30,000 for these kids, so we can make sure each one of them gets a meal each day," Severson said. 

The first annual Barrel House Hungry Hearts Foundation is October 14. It doesn't end there.  The Barrel House is also donating 10 percent of its proceeds from the first Monday of each month to the free lunch program. 

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