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Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive Set For Saturday

Bob Barrett

The annual Stamp Out Hunger Food drive is set for tomorrow (Saturday) and people are being asked to leave a bag of nonperishable food items by their mailbox so letter carriers can collect them.

People are being asked to leave nonperishable food items in bags at their mailboxes this Saturday. Pasta, Tuna, Peanut butter, canned meats, beans and other packaged foods are needed. Thursday morning in downtown Pensacola, a rally was held to kick off the event.

Phillip Skipper, the President of the Northwest Florida Letter Carriers told the crowd of a couple of dozen people outside the downtown Pensacola Post Office that this has grown into the "single largest food drive in the nation".  He said the event started back in 1991 and has grown to an annual tradition that letter carriers look forward to and take seriously, saying it's their way of giving back to the community and people in need.

And those people will be served by several different outlets around the area. One is the ACTS Ministry of Holley Assembly of God. Doug Barber, the pastor at the church, spoke during the rally saying being able to help people in need such as single mothers is rewarding and he considers it part of their ministry.

Credit Bob Barrett / WUWF News
Managers from local Publix supermarkets distribute food to local food banks at the Pensacola Post Office Thursday morning to kick off the Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive.

De De Flounlacker, the Executive Director of Manna Food Pantries says this is a very important weekend for them, saying "it's the single largest food drive we have throughout the year". It was the Stamp Out Hunger Drive last year that helped replenish Manna’s inventory after the late April flood destroyed their inventory of food.

Ann Kulbeckas took over as postmaster of Pensacola last year the week before the food drive began. It was just after the flood and storing food and keeping it dry was an issue. Nobody is expecting a repeat of those problems this year. The weather over the weekend is supposed to be sunny and warm, just the right kind of day to take a walk to the mailbox and leave a bag of food for this year’s drive.

Bob Barrett has been a radio broadcaster since the mid 1970s and has worked at stations from northern New York to south Florida and, oddly, has been able to make a living that way. He began work in public radio in 2001. Over the years he has produced nationally syndicated programs such as The Environment Show and The Health Show for Northeast Public Radio's National Productions.