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The Colton Aid Network put together boxes for 68 members of the Colton community

Colton Aid Network put together Thanksgiving food boxes for 68 members of the community, including 26 children. The boxes were filled with turkey, potatoes, bags of salad, carrots, rolls, milk, eggs, bananas, pumpkin pie and packaged food for the meal along with extras for the cupboard for weeks to come.

"I really appreciate the help our family gets during the holidays," one recipient, who wished not to be named, said. "We are on a tight budget and this is such a big help."

PIONEER PHOTO: CINDY FAMA - Colton Aid Network volunteers pose for a photo after finishing packing the Thanksgiving boxes. Pictured from left to right are Kyle Powell, Ron Allen, Carl Stephens, Kelly Stephens, Dan Dunn, Tara Graves, John Graves, Sherry Allen, Michele Chapman, Ron Norton, Geri Fraijo, Frank Kaneaster and Ruth Nimrod.

Helping with sorting and packing the boxes in the Colton Fire Station were Tara and John Graves, Kelly and Carl Stephens, Michele Axmaker Chapman, Susie Schriever, Ron Norton, Trish and Pastor Jim Dawson, Larry Benthin, Daniel Dunn, Frank Kaneaster, Ruth Nimrod, Cindy Fama, Sherry and Ron Allen and Kyle Powell.

Geri Fraijo, who heads up the charitable organization, along with Kelly Stephens and Michele Chapman, praised Colton High School for their participation. She said the leadership class was responsible for bringing in a lot of the non-perishable foods. The class held a canned food drive to benefit the Thanksgiving baskets with a grade competition to see which class could bring in the most packaged food. The junior class won with a total of 515 cans.

To promote the food drive CHS senior Grace James wrote and produced a video featuring the leadership class and Mrs. Shelton (cameo by Mr. Shelton). It was made during their annual retreat. The video is a thriller/comedy about "Mr. Lonely," a can of food that keeps showing up and no matter how many times it is put it back into the cupboard, the can mysteriously and creepily shows up again. It turns out the can just wants to be part of the food drive and life is good.

 

"The students in the leadership class are role models," Fraijo said in a message, "not only in their peer group or high school but they should also be recognized as leaders in their community."

PIONEER PHOTO: CINDY FAMA - Colton High School seniors Seth Bruesch, Logan Sprague, Kris Bjorn and Kreygan Raasch moved the boxes filled with food donations from the high school to the fire department.

Colton Aid Network said they received enough generous donations to help pay for the Thanksgiving dinner items and wanted to especially thank Estacada Harvest Market for the generosity and help with purchases. The produce was from Milk Creek Produce who always is there to help during the holiday and this year Milwaukie Grocery Outlet helped the group stretch their dollars to provide just a little more for the boxes.

"Frank Kaneaster (volunteer firefighter) has been a great help today," Fraijo said. "He was here early this morning to move the fire rigs out of the bays so we could use them for the food boxes. He helped pack boxes and has volunteered to do the clean-up, recycle boxes, put the rigs back and close up the bays and station."

Colton Aid is getting ready for the Christmas season, Gift of Giving tags for the children will be available at the annual COLTONTEL tree lighting on Dec. 7 and at the phone company main office, 20983 South Highway 211 and the Colton Fire Station, 20987.

If you know anyone who could use help at Christmas to stretch their budget, the sign-up sheets for Christmas food baskets and gifts for children can be picked up at the phone company or fire department. They need to be returned by Dec. 15 to either site.

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