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Help feed the Hungry

Annual ‘Venison for the Hungry’ collection drive set to begin

November 8, 2010
By Ashley Hoholik

GLADSTONE - Hunting season is something akin to Christmas for many area residents, and the Memorial United Methodist Church in Gladstone is asking these same residents to spread the joy.

The church's annual "Venison for the Hungry" has been a seasonal staple in the area for 18 years, and according to event participants, there is no better time to join the cause.

Dave Nemacheck, whose wife started the venison collection drive, notes the cause is an easy fit for the area.

Article Photos

Venison for the Hungry Organizer Dave Nemacheck, center, delivers venison to a soup kitchen in the Cass Corridor of Detroit. The venison is donated locally by deer hunters and divided between the downstate soup kitchen and the Salvation Army in Escanaba. (Courtesy photo)

"My wife, Barbara, started it because she saw a need," he said. "There are a lot of people who like to hunt, but don't necessarily care for venison. She saw an opportunity in this."

The donation process is the same as in past years, explains Nemacheck, with the U.P. Whitetail Association administering the grant to fund all processing costs - making it easy for hunters to give.

"Deer hunters can donate their field-dressed deer and we will process it for the hungry," he said.

Fact Box

At a glance

Memorial United's annual "Venison for the Hungry" has been a seasonal staple in the area for 18 years.

Drop-off spots for hunters include Soderman's Meat Processing, 6207 Days River Road, Brampton, or Viau's Supermarket, 1519 Sheridan Road, Escanaba.

Drop-off spots for hunters include Soderman's Meat Processing, 6207 Days River Road, Brampton, or Viau's Supermarket, 1519 Sheridan Road, Escanaba.

"Once the hunters drop the deer off, it is ground as hamburger," said Nemacheck. "Half is distributed to the Salvation Army in Escanaba, and half is sent to a soup kitchen in the Cass Corridor of Detroit."

According to Nemacheck, the Methodist missionaries in the Cass Corridor of Detroit assist some of Michigan's neediest families.

"This area is probably one of the hardest hit, economically, in Michigan," he adds. "The people involved down there do great things."

Locally, the drive has collected more than six tons of ground venison since its inception in 1991, said Nemacheck.

During 2009, approximately 1,500 pounds of venison was distributed, according to a press release issued by his wife Barbara, but the supply did not last until summer.

As need increases and supplies dwindle, Nemacheck points out that the cause has become even more important this year.

"We ask that people keeping donating," he said. "It is a simple project that feeds a lot of people."

For more information on Venison for the Hungry, or to donate, call the Memorial United Methodist Church in Gladstone at 428-9311 or Barbara Nemacheck at 428-9129.

 
 

 

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