Mobile food drive to set up shop for first time at casino lot

Ohio County

OHIO COUNTY, W.Va. (WTRF) — Near 12,000 pounds of food will be packed into hundreds of Ohio County trunks come Friday, July 17, as the Mountaineer Food Bank Mobile Food Pantry is setting up shop on Wheeling Island at a new location.

From 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., an estimated 250 West Virginia families are expected to pick up fresh produce; something that organizers say is filling a huge void in the area.

It will be drive-thru pickup style, but the choice venue is a first for the food bank. Program directors Google-mapped Wheeling Island Hotel-Casino-Racetrack and found the parking lot to be humongous, a perfect distribution site.

We’ve never hosted a mobile food pantry at a casino before, so that will be interesting. That will be neat. We’re always looking for different partners and new sites.

Laura Phillips, Director of Community Programs, Mountaineer Food Bank

In this time, people who have never had to access food before, are having to access food. We do have a soup kitchen, and we have other food pantries, but this is a little different that you’re not coming in with income requirements. People are going to be able to come in. It is for West Virginia residents.

Claudia Raymer, Executive Director, Ohio County Family resource network

Many Ohio County food distributors have had to pause because of the pandemic, so Mountaineer Food Bank is grateful to still be able to operate in 48 counties thanks to volunteers like Ohio County FRN and the casino.

They just ask that you clear-out your trunk for the copious amounts of food to be put in.

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