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Shepherd to hold potato drop on April 14

ISSUED: 12 April 2012
MEDIA CONTACT: Valerie Owens
(Shepherd to hold potato drop on April 14)

Shepherdstown, WV--Members of the Shepherdstown Rotary and Shepherd University Roteract will gather Saturday, April 14 at 7 a.m. as 40,000 pounds of sweet potatoes are dropped from a truck in front of Knutti Hall.

The potatoes will be bagged by volunteers and distributed to 17 food banks that will reach the four-state region.

Local clubs have partnered with the Society of St. Andrews, a grassroots, faith-based, hunger relief organization to make the event possible.

The Society of St. Andrew salvages tractor-trailer loads of potatoes and other produce that are rejected by commercial markets or potato chip factories due to slight imperfections in size, shape, sugar content, or surface blemishes. Through the Potato and Produce Project, the Society of St. Andrew is able to redirect these loads of fresh, nutritious produce to food banks, soup kitchens, Native American reservations, food pantries, low-income housing areas, local churches, and other hunger agencies for redistribution.

The nonprofit group bridges the hunger gap by taking salvaged food that is rejected due to imperfections and then secured by St. Andrew to be given to food pantries and soup kitchens.

North King Street in Shepherdstown will be closed to traffic from the early morning hours on April 14 until noon Saturday to allow a semi-truck full of potatoes to be dropped into the street. Potatoes will be dropped at 6 a.m. and volunteers will begin bagging the produce at 7 a.m.

"The potato drop is a perfect opportunity for the community and campus to join together for a hands-on, meaningful project," said Holly Frye, assistant vice president for student affairs (community engagement). "The food that we bag will end up on the table of someone who may otherwise go without."

Coffee and refreshments will be available for donation, and WSHC will be broadcasting live from the event.

For more information, call the Office of Student Community Services and Service Learning at 304-876-5402.

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