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Baraboo food drive to return

September 10, 2018

Not satisfied with its food drive’s smashing debut, Baraboo High School’s Interact club is hungry for more.

Organizers are planning a second Food for Kidz event for March and are looking for donor support and volunteer help. Interact officers Rachel Lichte and Brayden Turner, who volunteered at last year’s event, are organizing Food for Kidz.

“It was such a hyped-up atmosphere,” Lichte said. “It was like a rock concert.”

More than 250 volunteers showed up to assemble 74,000 prepackaged meals in the school gym as a disc jockey played high-energy music. Church groups, businesses and civic clubs formed teams to send food to needy countries around the world.

“They came together for one reason, to help a cause,” Lichte said.

The since-graduated Paige Goeckermann and Jenna Kothbauer raised more than $10,000 to buy meals through Food for Kidz, a nonprofit that provides loads of sustainable food — a mixture of protein, rice, vegetables and seasonings — along with packing supplies and an adviser to help volunteers prepare them for distribution.

“Rachel and I want to continue that,” Turner said. “We’re raising money to help the community do a service to the world.”

They’re approaching last year’s donors and volunteers for help, and hope to identify some new supporters. They’ve established a GoFundMe page and are looking for 280 volunteers to cover two shifts on March 30.

“Paige and Jenna got the hard part out of the way for us,” Lichte said. “We hope to bring that back, and like 10 times more.”

Interact is an affiliate of the Baraboo Rotary Club.

Lichte and Turner said they want to build on the foundation their predecessors established and preserve an event that’s part fundraiser, part community party. “Even though we’re high school students, we can make an impact on the world,” Lichte said.

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