“Potatoes for Charity” or “Picking up spuds wearing our duds!” as I like to call it, is a great cause that you or your family might consider doing in this Fall season. Each year during the months of September thru October local potato farmers in the surrounding St. Cloud and Becker areas are harvesting potatoes. As a result, they often leave behind a certain amount of crop in their fields after harvest This is either because their machines were not able to reach the potatoes and pick them up or they are simply spill-overs from their machines at harvest. These “spuds” then, are free for the taking for any person or organization who wishes to gather them for home use or to donate to local charities.
For the past dozen or so years members from our parishes have come together to pick up some of the left-over crop. Volunteers pick by-hand these surplus potatoes and then donate to the local food shelves and various charities who want them. Last year a group of about two dozen people picked over 11,000 lbs. over the course of 2-3 weeks! They gather at the parking lot at St. Paul Church in the late afternoon about 4:30 p.m. then either catch a ride or caravan out to a pre-determined field to begin filling up trailers and buckets. Over 13 local charities have benefited from this project! People of all ages are welcome to help, even youth who must be accompanied by a parent or adult. It’s a great project for teaching our children the importance of giving and working for a great cause. We encourage all volunteers to come wearing good shoes, work gloves, bring a plastic bucket, a potato fork (if you have one) and to wear a Covid mask. Work ends about 7:00 pm.
These days with the pandemic and the economic challenges many people face, food shelves, local charities, and even families are suffering more from a lack of food items on their tables. As a People of God, it’s important that we always think outside our self and reach out. This said, I encourage anyone who has not done so, to please consider helping out. You can check out our ACC website at: taocatholic.org to watch a short video to give a better idea of what this is about and what it’s like. “Potatoes for Charity” is a great cause and a great way to support our local charities in Christ. If you or anyone you know is interested, please call Bernie Quist at: 320-290-2248 or Geoff Quist at: 320-252-9589 for more information. They are the main organizers of this project. Until then, God’s blessing and peace to all in Christ!
-- Fr LeRoy Scheierl