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Pantry demand grows

The Ticonderoga Food Pantry will hold its annual pancake supper buffet Friday, Oct. 15, 4:30-7 p.m. at the Ticonderoga Elks Club. Donations are appreciated.

The all-you-can-eat menu includes pancakes, french toast, sausage gravy and biscuits, bacon, sausage, hash, juice and desserts. It is one of the pantry's largest fundraising events of the year.

Also helping stock the pantry are food drives each year by local civic, youth, school and church groups. The annual Canadian Pacific Holiday Train also raised money and collects food donations for the pantry.

"We have tremendous community support," Beuerlein said. "Everything is greatly appreciated."

To stretch the budget, pantry volunteers, led by Teresa Pearson, clip coupons and constantly look for grocery specials.

"We clip coupons by the bushel," Pearson said. "It really saves a lot."

Although the Ti pantry is open to the public just three hours a week, Beuerlein estimates volunteers work about 2,000 hours annually. They normally start work at 7 a.m. organizing and stocking shelves to be ready to open at 11 a.m. They also travel to Schroon Lake to pick up deliveries by the regional food bank and to shop in the Glens Falls area.

"I'm retired, but I work harder now than I ever have," Pearson said.

Beuerlein appreciates he workers, many who come from the Essex County Retired Volunteer Senior Program.

"They're all good workers; very dedicated volunteers," she said. "Nobody gets paid, but I think they feel good about the work and the service the pantry provides."

Beuerlein hopes all eligible people take advantage of the services offered by the food pantry.

"We're here to help people," she said.

John Williams agreed. He expressed concern some local senior citizens could benefit from the pantry and don't.

"For years older people wouldn't come to the pantry," he said. "They were too proud. This isn't about pride, it's about helping out people in need. We're making in roads with seniors.

"We don't turn people away," Williams stressed.

Moriah and Schroon Lake also have food pantries that are part of the Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York. Beuerlein noted the three pantries often work with each other when facing shortages.

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