GIRL POWER: Daisies from the Walther Lutheran troop gather to collect for the Forest Park Food Pantry during the Girl Scout Food Drive Sept. 28. (Courtesy Elaine Luther)

Forest Park Girls Scouts from Cadet Troop 41420 and Daisy scouts from Walther Lutheran took to the streets Saturday, Sept. 28 to collect non-perishable food items for the Forest Park Food Pantry.

“The word really got out this year,” said troop mom Elaine Luther. “Our participation level in Forest Park was way up.”

In the past, scouts had to ring doorbells to get the same amount of food collected this year without ringing doorbells, Luther said.

“People left their donations out on the porches with the flyer attached,” she added.

The earlier food drive this year gives the food pantry an inventory boost before the big Thanksgiving rush.

Forest Park’s pantry serves between 50 – 60 families per month, said Community Center Director Karen Dylewski.The number increases to about 160 families over the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays.

The pantry gets year-round donations from collection boxes at the Post Office, St. John’s Church and Ed’s Way grocery stores. Volunteers Marie Beckmann and Rose Krogh collect from condominium buildings year-round, Dylewski said.

Any tax-deductible monetary donation the Forest Park Food Pantry receives is deposited in a checking account and used for holiday meals, Dylewski said.

Jean Lotus loves community journalism. She covers news, features, two school boards, village council, crime, park district and writes obits for Forest Park Review. She also covers the police beat for...