Seniors make upgrades at meal site

Manager Jean Inlow, cook's assistant Tekla Lounsbury, new head cook Gordon Hutchison and President Mary Burton stand in front of their newly fresh and clean kitchen. Volunteers at the meal site have spent three months renovating the facility. 

The Senior Meal Site in St. Maries has renovated its location.

To regular patrons of the meal site, the place may look a little different than it did a couple of months ago.

Mary Burton took helm at the Senior Meal Site three months ago, and her and the rest of the board members have spent those months updating and cleaning the facility.

“In the last three months this has turned upside down and around to what you see now,” Mrs. Burton said. “I’ve been putting in 40 to 50 hours a week.”

The group recently replaced carpeting, stripped and waxed the flooring, replaced and strengthened storage shelving and did an overhaul cleaning on the kitchen. Their efforts resulted in an A grade from Panhandle Health.

“Everything is clean new and fresh,” Mrs Burton said. “We have a fantastic team.”

The group also updated the parking lot by painting new lines and updating its parking signs, something that Mrs. Burton said hadn’t been done for years. She said the county helped with a lot of the building upgrades and that any of the supplies the group had to buy, they made sure to get from local businesses exclusively.

Mrs. Burton also said that they have recently brought on a new volunteer cook, Gordon Hutchison.

Mr. Hutchison was previously the cook at the Fernwood Meal Site and is well known for his quality.

“My wife and I used to go see Gordon up in Fernwood,” Bob Loe, a guest at the meal site, said. “When we heard he came to this meal site we decided to start coming here again.”

The team of volunteers said that they wanted to thank the community for the support that made the renovations possible.

The meal site has been serving the community for 30 years and meals are available by donation. The meal site is open Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays at noon.

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