Wal-Mart Distribution Center in Hermiston has been very helpful over the years with in-kind and grant funds contributions to the efforts of the Echo Kiwanis. Recently, Kiwanis held their monthly Food Pantry at the Masonic Lodge building, which is operated by city of Echo. The pantry was named in honor of Chet Prior, who initiated the project in 2010.
Just days before the Christmas holiday, it was the Echo’s largest Pantry ever with service to 44 households, including 124 individuals. In a town of about 700, over 17 percent were treated to food including a turkey for dinner at Christmas, by Chester’s Food Pantry.
In 2016, Wal-Mart DC provided grant funds to purchase a commercial-quality refrigerator which has been in constant use by the pantry since first arriving. With about nine or so volunteers each month, the group packages large boxes of food, and sometimes other contributed items, for distribution to Echo residents. Agape House, RiverPoint, Amstad’s, Echo second grade, Girl Scouts, FFA students, Echo Ridge Cellars as well as the local harvesters at JOB Enterprises have been among the dozens of local sponsors that keep Chester’s Food Pantry going.
OkotoberFest is a production of Echo Kiwanis. The group has also assisted with other events including Red2Red, Sage Trail Run, Memorial Day Car Show and the annual yard sales. This year, Walmart DC contributed grant funds to support traffic safety with which Kiwanis could purchase Uniform Traffic Code approved devices such as barricades and delineators which will be used in support of local events.
At this time of year, it is good to reflect with appreciation. We want to publicly say thank you to those who take the time to share; especially, Walmart DC of Hermiston — thank you for helping to make our community a better place to live.
Michael Duffy, past president
P.O. Box 91
Echo, OR 97826