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Published October 29, 2012, 11:30 PM

Fill The Dome drive aims to collect enough food, cash for 500,000 meals

MOORHEAD – This year’s Fill The Dome drive is aiming to collect enough food and cash to provide 500,000 meals for the region’s hungry through food banks and soup kitchens.

By: Helmut Schmidt, INFORUM

MOORHEAD – This year’s Fill The Dome drive is aiming to collect enough food and cash to provide 500,000 meals for the region’s hungry through food banks and soup kitchens.

The youth-led drive, now in its sixth year, held its kick-off event Monday at the Courtyard by Marriott.

Students from about 60 area schools are taking part in this year’s drive, which culminates with food collection at the Fargodome on Nov. 19-20, Shanley High School senior Nico Hanson said.

About 120 students, parents and area school, business and community leaders were at the kick-off, the crowd thinned by a Fargo political rally featuring former President Bill Clinton.

“Fill The Dome is about making the best of what you’ve got” and the community coming together, said Anjoli Lall, a student at Fargo’s Davies High School.

“Tonight is about coming together to form an experience” and making a change in the community, Lall said.

Since 2007, Fill The Dome has raised $315,000 and 390 tons of food for the area’s hungry, organizers said.

Among the events the Metro Area Student Ambassadors have organized is Trick or Canning on Wednesday (Halloween). Students will go door-to-door asking for non-perishable foods.

There will also be a Domecoming dance 8 p.m. Saturday at Fargo’s Woodrow Wilson High School.

Monetary donations are being taken online at www.fillthedome.org.

A $10 donation can also be made by texting FILLDOME to 20222. The donation will be added to your phone bill.

Hornbacher’s will again sell $10 pre-packed bags of food in the week leading up to the close of the drive, and they will be a drop-off point for food donations, Hanson said.

Food will also be collected by students at area schools, and community members can drop off food items at the Fargodome on Nov. 19, Hanson said.

“I think it’s tremendously awesome that they see the needs of the community,” said Terry Karger, principal of Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton High School. “It’s a great learning curve for all of our students just to see the difference that they can make.”

To determine the number of meals, Hanson said the group uses two rules of thumb: 1.3 pounds of food equals one meal, and every $1 raised can provide four meals.

Karen Stoker, owner of Fargo’s Hotel Donaldson, praised the enthusiasm of the students.

She said they are learning valuable life lessons through their organizing and fundraising in the business community.

“As grown-ups, all we have to do is get out of the way and applaud them,” Stoker said. “They don’t see borders and boundaries, they just see possibilities.”

The 2011 drive collected 160,021 pounds, or 80 tons, of food and $80,000. That supplied about 443,093 meals, the Metro Area Student Ambassadors said.

The 2010 drive took in 97 tons of food and $75,000.


Readers can reach Forum reporter Helmut Schmidt at (701) 241-5583

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