Photo by Katie Teachout
Chuck Weller and Bob Lind slice up sausages at the 35th annual Tonasket Kiwanis Ground Hog Dinner.
As of Tuesday, February 5, 2019
TONASKET — Kiwanians served a hearty crowd at the 35th annual Ground Hog Dinner at Tonasket High School Saturday.
Profits from sales of the dinner of pork sausage, scalloped potatoes, coleslaw, veggies, applesauce, roll and dessert go to the club’s youth/community fund; along with additional sales of the bulk sausage at $3.50 per pound.
“Some people bought as many as 15 rolls each,” said Bertha Wandler, who has been the Kiwanis secretary the past 14 years. Wandler was weighing, pricing and labeling the seven-pound rolls from around 2 p.m. until 6:30 p.m. while her husband Herb and Aaron Kester wrapped them.
Recent projects the Kiwanis donated to include playground equipment for the Little Learners Park in Tonasket; and a bench like the one placed between the former Roy’s Pharmacy and Grant’s Market, to be placed at North Valley Extended Care.
The Kiwanis pay for a camp host at Lost Lake’s Camp Togiwani, and maintain and rent out the camp.
Other organizations to benefit locally are the FBLA, with students able to attend businesses conferences courtesy of the Kiwanis.
The Kiwanis sponsor an award at the junior rodeo, and buy a trophy for FFA members competing at the Okanogan County Fair.
Tonasket Elementary School students are honored each month, with recognition from the Kiwanis as “Terrific Kids,” selected by their teachers.
“We honor between 17 to 22 per month,” said Wandler. “It costs about $400 per year.” The kids receive pencils and a bumper sticker for the family car, along with refrigerator magnets and a pin.
The Kiwanis warm up citizens with free cocoa and hot apple cider at the annual Winterfest activities in town.
They also give out two scholarships per year to local high school students headed to college or trade school.
Money is raised through summer sales of berries, along with the annual dinner.
“I come up every year,” said Winthrop Kiwanis Secretary Roy Reiber, attending with a contingent of Methow Valley friends. “We try to get them to come over to the Bite of the Methow.”
An annual fundraiser for the Winthrop Kiwanis, the event will be held March 16 at the Winthrop Barn.
“It’s awesome,” said Bertha Wandler. “You need to go to it.”
Last year’s Bite of the Methow raised funds to replace the scoreboard at Liberty Bell High School, and funds were raised to construct an ADA-accessible ramp at the Twisp Valley Grange the previous year.