Pie fundraiser brings community together

An annual fundraiser of making and selling apple pies was not only a success, but a lot of fun for those involved.
Nearly 30 people from across the district turned out last Thursday at the Christian Reformed Church in Emo to make more than 650 pies—the most they’ve ever made during the four years the event has been held.
And the pies already were sold-out even before they were made. “In fact, we still didn’t fill all the orders,” noted organizer Yvonne Veldhuisen.
Veldhuisen also indicated they hadn’t really planned to hold the pie-making fundraiser this year, citing the amount of time and effort spent on the project.
“But we had several people call and want to place orders, so we decided to do it,” she added.
Each pie cost $7, plus Veldhuisen said a private benefactor planned to match each dollar raised, with proceeds going towards the building fund for the Sturgeon Creek Alternative Program (SCAP).
Veldhuisen said the fundraiser showed a lot of community support.
“It’s not really about the pies or even the money,” she remarked. “It’s about putting out a call for help and having an amazing response.”
She said many of the seniors who came out to help set a good example.
“They have huge hearts and an endless work ethic,” Veldhuisen enthused, noting it allowed many of them to visit with others they normally wouldn’t have a chance to see.
With an assembly line beginning with apple peeling and crust making, and ending with pies being placed in boxes, those helping out certainly were enjoying their day.
“I have nothing else to do being old and retired,” chuckled Bill Sieders. “It’s nice to get out and socialize.”
Len Hettinga agreed, while continuing to peel apples. “It’s fun and great that we can all work together,” he stressed.
Olive Friesen said she enjoyed how the volunteers were instructed to take a lunch break together. “It was nice to sit down and visit with everyone and not have to worry about getting backed up,” she remarked.
Veldhuisen was surprised by the amount of support shown by these volunteers—and by local businesses.
“A lot of our supplies didn’t get here because of the snowstorm in Winnipeg, so many businesses gave us boxes, bags, and pie plates pretty much at cost, as well as letting us use whatever equipment we needed,” she noted.
“And out of 28 boxes of apples, approximately 16 were donated,” she added.
Veldhuisen also noted how some of the people who came out to help last Thursday don’t even have a connection to SCAP—they just wanted to be involved for the sake of contributing to the community.
“It’s great that we can do this and help the kids at the school,” said John Esselink. “I know they appreciated it.
“It’s a lot of work but it’s fun, too,” he enthused.
Veldhuisen noted the fundraiser has become an important event for the community, and already has plans to hold next year’s over two days instead of one.
She also said she’d like to hold a mini pie-making day in the near future.
“Not a full-blown out day like last week, just a few people getting together,” she remarked. “We’re confident we can sell another 200 pies.”