Lutheran church will host program
By JAMES EIK
Following its break over the summer months, the Senior Meals program in Medical Lake is returning but in a new location.
Instead of serving meals at the St. Anne Catholic Church, the program will operate out of St. John's Lutheran Church, at 223 S. Hallett St. in Medical Lake. The Medical Lake Lions Club sponsors the program.
“The Catholic church was a great home,” organizer Bill Trout said, speaking about the location change. “I can't praise the Lutheran church enough.”
Although their new location has a somewhat smaller kitchen, he is looking forward to another strong year, providing a weekly meal to seniors in the city. Trout, who turned 70 earlier this year, is entering his third year at the helm, with the help of his wife.
“It's a social outlet for elder people,” Trout said. “I think they get a lot of fellowship and they get a good meal out of it.”
The year will start off with a barbecue-themed meal, including hot dogs, burgers, baked beans and salads. Trout takes pride in the fact that the program's menus don't repeat throughout the course of 29 different meals in the eight to nine months it operates.
Volunteers are at the heart of the program, and Trout is continually seeking people willing to help out. Currently six, in addition to Trout and his wife, help make the program a strong service to the community.
“We always need volunteers,” he said. “For the most part we have regulars, but we're always looking for people to help.”
Each week, preparations begin at 6:30 in the morning for the meal. Volunteers go around washing dishes, chopping food, delivering meals, cleaning up and getting ready for the service time. Trout said meals average anywhere from 80 to over 110 residents, who are grateful for the program.
The Senior Meals program has been active in Medical Lake for the better part of 35 years. It previously operated out of City Hall and then the Catholic Church for the last few years. The church, Trout said, was a central location in the city, and helped attract newcomers. A change in location, although only a few blocks away, will mean some small changes in routine.
“It might take a little more work to get things done, but that's a small price to pay,” he said.
A donation of $4 is suggested for the meal, but there is no admission fee.
Although the new location at the Lutheran church will mean some changes behind the scenes, the new season looks bright for the program.
“They were much more willing than I ever expected,” Trout said. “They're absolutely wonderful people to work with. I'm absolutely amazed.”
James Eik can be reached at email@example.com.