Access to nutritious meals won’t be a problem for local youth this summer as Scottsbluff and Gering schools and the Carpenter Center prepare to offer meals.
Summer Food Sites open May 31–July 29
|Bluffs Middle School||10:45 a.m. to 12:45 p.m.|
|Lincoln Heights||10:45 a.m. to 12:45 p.m.|
|Westmoor||11:25 a.m. to noon (Only open through June 24)|
|Trails West Park*||11:30 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.|
|Veterans Park*||Noon to 12:45 p.m.|
|d Scottsbluff Public Library*||12:10 p.m. to 12:40 p.m.|
|Community Christian||11 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. (Breakfast provided from 8 to 8:30 a.m.)|
|Scottsbluff High School*||11:30 a.m. to noon|
Scottsbluff Public Schools will begin its Summer Food Service Program on Tuesday, May 31. The district’s food service management company Taher will offer meals at six locations to children, 18 years of age and younger, free of charge. Adults can purchase a meal for $4.50.
Snacks will also be provided from 9-9:30 a.m. at SBPS school locations, except for Scottsbluff High School, for children ages 18 years and younger. Snacks cost $3.55 and breakfast costs $3.85 for adults.
In addition to the summer meal offerings at the schools, the district will offer mobile locations around town that will serve meals and snacks as well. Warm meals will be provided at the schools, with sack lunches offered at the mobile locations. Those locations include Trails West Park, Veterans Park and Lied Scottsbluff Public Library. Community Christian School will not offer a snack, but will offer breakfast from 8 to 8:30 a.m. Access to snacks is open to community members as well.
People are also reading…
Tiffany Kasza, an administrative assistant with Taher, said this year’s program will return to pre-pandemic operations and regulations.
“So we will no longer have grab-and-go meals,” Kasza said. “Participants are encouraged and required to stay onsite to eat their meals.”
The summer program will allow children in Scottsbluff to receive meals in their elementary attendance area as well as stay connected with their friends and district staff.
“We start Tuesday and we’ll be out in the community,” Kasza said. “It’s nice to have the kids come see us. We do miss them during the summer.”
The summer meal program has been offered for several years, something Kasza said is important for youth.
“During the summers, a lot of the time people are on the go,” she said. “This is a nice opportunity, if you’re out and about, to grab a lunch for your child. Coming also keeps friendships maintained because it gives kids a chance to hangout and have a meal before they continue on with summer.”
According to the district’s press release, “Acceptance and participation requirements for the program are the same for all regardless of race, color, national origin, gender or disability.”
Gering Public Schools will also offer a summer meal program from May 25 through June 30.
Throughout the week, children ages one to 18 years old can pick up free breakfast and lunch at Gering High School, located at 1500 U St. Breakfast will be served from 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. and lunch will be served from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Adults can buy a meal for $4.
Matt Carpenter, executive director of Carpenter Center, said the center will once again offer its summer meal program for youth, ages 18 years and younger. The program begins June 6. An end date has not been determined and will be aligned with the start of the school year, Carpenter said.
“We really feel like it’s important in this neighborhood to be able to provide nutritious meals to children, who might not be able to get to a school over the summer,” Carpenter said. “We may be a closer location for them.”
The center has offered grab-and-go meals for the past couple of years, but will resume the traditional meal offerings on the premises.
“Families can just show up,” he said, adding meals will be served between 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. “This year, we have gone back to the monitored eating, so kids will have to eat on premises. We will have tables and chairs set up in the community area.”
Meals are also available for kids with dietary restrictions. They can notify the monitor or head cook and substitutions will be made as necessary.
“I just hope it gives youth a place to come get a healthy meal,” he said. “It’s also an opportunity for them to make new friends with that social aspect as well.”
The Carpenter Center’s meal program operates similarly to the school district’s program; however, they have their own cook and will have a different menu.
Both programs will post menus online and via the Taher Food 4 Life app. The app is the same one families use during the school year.