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Lunch crew keeps kids fed


April 30, 2020

Shana Neesvig

Tara Foreman manages the Grab-n-Go food pickup station at the Trout Creek School.

Food preparation service at Trout Creek School is on a roll making sure students do not go hungry during their time away from the classroom. Every Monday, students are greeted with nourishing goods for breakfasts and lunches for each day of the week.

According to Renna Mummert, food service provider at the school, they are currently providing meals for 18 families, which is around 360 breakfasts and lunches a week. She said the food delivery truck arrives on Thursday and "we start prepping what we can to have it ready to go!"

Cindy Bertsch, a 32-year veteran of the Trout Creek School and head cook, and school paraprofessional Tara Foreman join Mummert in carrying out the state-funded nutritional program, according to Principal Debbie Phillips.

"The parents pick up the meals by the week from 11 to noon each week on Mondays," Phillips said. "They (parents) have raved on Facebook about how great our ladies have done, and they don't know what they would have done without these meals!"

Courtesy photo

After 32 years serving students at Trout Creek, Cindy Bertsch is retiring. She has filled the head cook position and been an important part in implementing the current school Grab-n-Go program. Every Monday parents can receive weekly breakfasts and lunches for students.

As the ladies were carrying out multiple bags and boxes of food Monday morning, Trout Creek's Craig Barrus assisted them. Staging a pick-up zone is no small task and requires physical stamina. To make matters more difficult, the women were doing heavy lifting and moving with face masks on for protection. "It's like having an asthma attack," Bertsch commented about breathing through the masks after carrying boxed deliverables from the school kitchen, located in the basement, to the parking lot.

After three decades plus two years serving Trout Creek students, Bertsch is retiring this year. Although she declined to have a story about her time at the school, her coworkers were more than willing to share how grateful they are for the time with her. She probably never imagined her last year would end like this.

"She will be greatly missed and the memories of her tasty home style meals will live on in the hearts of many," Mummert said. "So many past students who have children of their own attending Trout Creek School still talk of their favorite meals prepared by Cindy. What a great compliment to her commitment and contribution to our school. We love our Miss Cindy and could never thank her enough for all her hard work in the kitchen and providing our children with her wonderful meals. We wish her the happiest of retirements."


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