Ruby’s Pantry Austin is looking ahead to winter, and they are making plans to continue their distributions at the Mower County Fairgrounds with some changes.
Bob Rosel, Ruby’s Media Coordinator in Austin stated that currently, Ruby’s uses the Plager Building as a staging area but that building will be used for winter storage of boats and RV’s and be unavailable. The Mower County Fair Board has offered the use of other facilities and Ruby’s is expected to use them starting in November.
Ruby’s Pantry Austin will also be experimenting with a slightly different way to distribute the food during our October 15th distribution. Instead of prefilling boxes and then putting those boxes in each vehicle, Rosel stated that they are going to try a station-to-station drive-thru. Each vehicle will start moving slowly down the line with the trunk open and will stop at each station. At each stop a volunteer will put the food item into the trunk and the guest will then slowly drive on to the next station, where the process will be repeated. This will continue all the way for the 15 to 20 stations of items available. No boxes will be loaded into the vehicle. However, if a guest would like the volunteers to place the items in a box or basket they can put two empty laundry basket sized containers, for each bundle, in their vehicle and the items will be placed in their baskets. The boxes from past distributions at the fairgrounds would be perfect for this process.
Ruby’s Austin is hoping to speed up the distribution and keep their volunteers safe by doing most of the work outside and giving them the option for distributions in case they do not have access to a building for staging. Guests will enter the fairgrounds, as before, from 4th Ave SW and will then line up while waiting for instructions to get in line. A $20 per bundle exact cash donation is requested for each bundle with a maximum of two bundles per vehicle. Guests are asked to clean out a space in their vehicle for the items to be quickly and safely placed. The distribution starts at 5:00 PM.
Ruby’s Pantry Austin is trying this method to see how it works and changes to the process will be made if necessary. Guests are asked to follow instructions and will remain in their vehicle during the distribution.
Anyone with questions can call Grace Lutheran Church at 433-3445 and check out our Rubys Pantry Austin Facebook page.