Popular NA Summer Food program will return this year

    Once again North Adams Community Schools will offer free service for all county children 18 and younger, and to persons older than 18 who are enrolled in a state-approved educational program for the mentally or physically disabled.
    NA Food Service Director Erin Ripley met with the board of education Tuesday to lay out the details of the program and receive final approval.  She noted the meals will be provided to all children without charge and are the same for all children. There will be no discrimination in the course of the meal service.
    “This is the ninth year we’ve done this,” Ripley said, “and it’s never shrunk; it’s only gotten bigger or at the very least stayed the same. It’s an important program. WE have 47 percent of our children on free or reduced lunch. So we’re feeding them at school. What happens during the summer?”
    Stepping things up a notch, Ripley noted the addition of a few programs that are sure to be popular among youngsters, such as a taco truck at the city pool and a reading program. “We have a lot of collaborators this year. We’re not just going to feed them, we’re going to offer some educational programs, too.”
    Several individuals and organizations are collaborating with the free lunch program to offer something more to area children, including Bob Corral of Adams County Recreation Nation. This volunteer organization provides free youth activities focused on keeping youth active in our community.
    The goal of Recreation Nation is for high school students from Adams Central, Bellmont and South Adams Schools to mentor Adams County students in third through eighth grade in an activity to promote teamwork, sportsmanship and respect. There is no cost to these activities.
    To get a general idea of how many students may be interested in attending — and to provide an adequate number of volunteers for each event — there is a sign-up sheet on the NACS Food Service site, as well as at each one of the NA schools and administration building.
    Olivia Valencic-Miller and  Michelle Houser will host the NA Bookmobile “Come Read with Us,”  designed to visit the local parks and pool to continue the district’s initiative to encourage children and families to READ.
    Ripley said she has been in close contact with Bellmont coaches Marty Ballard (football), Andy Heim (basketball camp), Sandy Busick (softball camp) and Tim Myers (wrestling camp), all of whom are working to arrange the athletic schedules around the free lunch program. “The goal is easy access. This way when they’re done with athletics, if they want to grab a free lunch before heading to home or to work or wherever, it’s right there. This way we’re also teaching good eating habits.”
    Of course Chris Krull of the Parks and Recreation Department is already looking toward the summer months with his staff. Parks and Rec, well known for their children’s programs, will offer several summer camps, including Nuts About Nature, Arts and Atoms and Games and Grub.
    Speaking of Parks and Rec, a new feature of the summer food program that is sure to be a hit is the taco truck that will be at the pool this summer, serving up tacos and nachos. “We were able to use one of our trucks, and equip it with electricity for crock-pots and such, so we can,” Ripley said.
    This being Indiana, weather is always an issue. But for at least one week this summer, the food service staff will have a roof overhead as Pastor Jim Voglewede of North Adams Church of Christ on Cleveland Street opened their location June 19-June 23 in a joined effort to provide nutritious meals for the benefit the children in the community.  A hotdog grill is scheduled June 23.
    Deb Ungemach of the Zion Lutheran Bible Camp has also offered their church July 23- July 27.
    “This is awesome,”said board member Stacey Bussel. “I like the new ideas and the things you’re doing. Thank you!” Bussel wasn’t alone in her praise for Ripley and the NA food service staff, as the rest of the board commended Ripley and her staff for the “incredible job you do.”

ABOUT THE PROGRAM    
    In accordance with Federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, its Agencies, offices and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, sex, disability, age, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity in any program or activity conducted or funded by USDA.  
    Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g. Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.), should contact the Agency (State or local) where they applied for benefits.  Individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech disabilities may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339.  Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English.
    To file a program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, (AD-3027) found online at: http://www.ascr.usda.gov/complaint_filing_cust.html, and at any USDA office, or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call (866) 632-9992. Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20250-9410; fax: (202) 690-7442; or email: program.intake@usda.gov.
    This institution is an equal opportunity provider.
    Free meals will be provided at the sites listed below beginning May 29 and ending Aug. 9. For more information contact Ripley at 724-7121 EXT. 2138, or by mail at 1000 E. North Adams Drive, Decatur In 46733.

Bellmont High School, 1000 North Adams Drive — Free youth activities with Recreation Nation.
    Entrance S1 — 8-9 a.m. Monday-Thursday, June 5-June 29;    Entrance N15 — 9:30-10:30 a.m.Tuesday-Thursday, June 13-July 27;    Entrance E1 — 8-9 a.m. Monday-Friday, June 19-June 23;    Entrance E2 — 11-1 p.m. Monday-Thursday, June 5-June 15; 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Monday-Friday, June 19-June 23; 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Monday-Thursday, June 26-June 30; and 11:15 a.m.-1 p.m. Monday-Thursday, July 10-July 27.        
Northwest Elementary, 1109 Dayton Street — Entrance W-4 — 8:30-9:30 a.m. Monday-Friday, June 5-June 23;    Entrance W-4— 12:15-12:30 p.m. Monday-Friday, June 5-June 23.        
Bellmont Middle School, 1200 North Adams Drive
    Entrance W-3 — 8:45-9:45 a.m. Monday-Friday, June 19-23.        
Kekionga Park, Locust Street off Mercer — NACS Bookmobile “Come Read With Us”; alternate location due to weather Riverside Center, 231 E. Monroe.
    • 9-9:30 a.m. Tuesdays, July 11,18, 25; and    
    • 11:30 a.m.-12 p.m. Tuesdays, July 11,18, 25.        

Legion Park, 501 Winchester Street —NACS Bookmobile Come Read With Us With Us; alternate location due to weather Riverside Center.
    • 9-9:30 a.m. Wednesday, July 12, 19, 26; and
    • 11:30 a.m.-12 p.m. Wednesday, July 12, 19, 26.

Hanna Nuttman Park, Washington Street, west of 13th Street at the end of the road. NACS Bookmobile Come Read With Us With Us; alternate location due to weather Riverside Center.
    • 9-9:30 a.m. Thursday, July 13, 20, 27; and
    • 11:30 a.m.-12 p.m. Thursday, July 13, 20, 27.

Park & Rec Riverside Center 231 E Monroe — Free youth activities with Recreation Nation.
    • 11:30 a.m.-12 p.m. Tuesdays, June 12-July 25; and
    • 9-10 a.m. Saturday, June 17.

North Adams Church of Christ, 630 Cleveland Street (rear entrance).
    • 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Monday-Friday, June 19-June 23.

Adams County Fair Grounds 160 W. Washington St. Monroe (beside dining hall).
    • 11:30 a.m.-12 p.m. Friday, June 30;    
    • 11 a.m. -12 p.m. Friday, July 14.

Decatur Pool, 315 Maple Street Park — Taco truck — NACS Bookmobile Come Read With Us; alternate location due to weather BHS.
    • 12-1 p.m. (lunch) and 1 -1:30 p.m. (snack) Monday-Friday, May 29-July 21.

Southeast Elementary, 901 Everhart Drive
    • 8:30-9:30 a.m. Monday-Friday, July 19-July 28; and

    • 12:15-12:30 p.m. Monday-Friday, July 19-July 28.

Zion Lutheran, 1022 W. Monroe    
    • 5:30-6 p.m. Monday-Thursday, July 23-July 27.  

Date: 
Monday, June 5, 2017 to Friday, July 28, 2017