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Good Cheer begins move to new Bayview site

Matt Young and daughter Maria are purchasing some bucks at the booth at the farmer
Matt Young and daughter Maria are purchasing some bucks at the booth at the farmer's market this weekend.
— image credit: Photo courtesy of Carolyn Tamler

BAYVIEW — The Good Cheer Food Bank is making a big move this week.

After nearly five decades in Langley, the food bank is moving to its new site in Bayview.

“This is like Christmas to me,” said Kathy McLaughlin, executive director of Good Cheer. “We worked so hard for this thing and it is great to see it happening.”

Good Cheer purchased the Masonic Temple in Bayview to expand its food bank operation. The additional space in Langley will become retail space for the thrift store, McLaughlin said.

“The move will allow us to increase our Langley retail sales floor space. The room that has been filled for the last 46 years with donations will be transformed into a room to display treasures for you to purchase in a prime retail location in Langley,” she said.

But the move will make things much easier for volunteers, donors and people receiving food, McLaughlin explained.

People can simply drive up without worrying about parking as in Langley. Also, the site is easily accessible with public transportation.

However, a new home for the food bank means minor inconvenience for donors.

To be able to accomplish the move in a timely manner Good Cheer will not be able to accept food donations until Monday, June 4.

At that time Good Cheer is asking that donors drop off donations at the new facility at Good Cheer Bayview Site, 2812 Grimm Road, just off Bayview Road.

“This is an exciting time for Good Cheer; we hope that you will share in our excitement and be understanding and patient through the transformation,” McLaughlin said.

The move began on Tuesday when 30 Rotarians reported for duty driving loads over to the site.

However, it will take several days to move everything and get settled.

However, being caught up in the big move doesn’t mean Good Cheer isn’t helping the hungry in other ways.

Last weekend, in cooperation with Whidbey One Corp, the Good Food Bucks premiered at the Bayview Market.

“What a great idea” was the most common response heard from Bayview Farmers Market shoppers this past Saturday. They donated more than $600 to the Good Cheer Food Bank by purchasing Good Food Bucks.

The bucks will be given to people who come to the food bank in June and are redeemable for food items sold by merchants at the Saturday Bayview Farmer’s Market, June 9 through 30.

Many people who donated said they were happy to help those in need with assistance on purchasing fresh, organic produce while helping the merchants at the market at the same time.

Carolyn and Rich Tamler and Peg Kimbell manned the booth. All of them are members of the Whidbey One Corp, a local branch of a national organization created by presidential candidate John Edwards to encourage people to do good work in their communities and the world.

Carolyn Tamler said that the idea became a reality through the cooperative work of many people, including staff at the Good Cheer Food Bank and the Farmer’s Market Association.

She also had help from Marti Anamosa, who designed the $5 Good Food Bucks certificate and loaned a tent; Grethe Cammermeyer who loaned the banner kit; a neighbor who loaned some folding chairs, and several others who lent moral support and encouragement.

“If Whidbey can create and spread the idea of Hearts & Hammers, we ought to be able to do the same with Good Food Bucks,” Tamler said.

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