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Food from the Soul

Posted November 13, 2012

Linda, a resident and volunteer at Pike Place Market

Linda is a resident and volunteer at Pike Place Market

PIKE MARKET FOOD BANK

It’s a brisk fall morning here at Pike Place Market. Tourists and locals alike begin to fill the Market, shopping for fresh food and handmade crafts. Meanwhile hundreds of seniors, families and downtown residents are lining up a few floors below at the Pike Market Food Bank.

 “The Market community is a place where people care about you and love you,” says Linda, a volunteer and resident of the Pike Place Market community.

Linda arrives at 7:30 AM to start her 6-hour volunteer shift and, like many of the volunteers, she’ll leave carrying her own bag of groceries as a fellow shopper of the Food Bank. “We’re all here for each other.”

The Food Bank is a small warehouse space located inside of the Pike Market Parking Garage. More than 500 families and households rely on the Food Bank every week to provide groceries to help them get by. “Dapper Darrell,” as he is lovingly named for his high-fashion style, welcomes each and every person with a smile. A dozen volunteers stand ready to hand out crates full of staples: rice, pasta, beans, canned tuna or ham, milk, tea or coffee, juice and bread.

What’s unique about the Pike Market Food Bank is the mound of fresh produce that is donated every day by our Market farmers.

Rick prepares his mother's meatloaf recipe to share with volunteers at Pike Market Food Bank

Rick prepares his mother’s meatloaf recipe to share with volunteers at Pike Market Food Bank

Meanwhile, volunteers are buzzing around in the backroom, unloading pallets of donated food, listening to music and sipping pots of hot coffee—the smell of cooking pasta and homemade meatloaf wafts through the air.

Every shift at the Food Bank ends with a potluck meal prepared by volunteers for volunteers.

It feels like family here,” says Lyn Red Fox a retired flight attendant and 7-year volunteer. “It’s always a good morning at the Food Bank!