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  • Writer's pictureKay Kuehn, Exec. Director

Just Sayin'...

My friend Ken passed away on May 25. I am sad and I am shocked. I miss him and I am not sure why as it was not as if I saw him a lot or hung around with him. I guess it is just that he was my friend and now a little void is there where he should be. He got cancer and a month after I heard that news he was gone. I did not get to say goodbye so it does not seem real.

Ken was a kind soul, a tall gentle giant in my eyes because he was much taller than me. He and Marlys made a great pair. I remember when they got married (I think around 2011) and she said they did not need anything so they asked for funds for a project she was undertaking for Open Hands Midway. Ken always had a smile on his face and was willing to do more than I think he was physically able to at times but he never complained. Maryls said that he loved to help at Open Hands Midway even if he did come home totally exhausted. I recall one day he agreed to take one of our volunteers home. Ken did not know the area where he was taking this guy and it took what seemed to be over and hour for him to return to Open Hands Midway to pick up Marlys. She asked me where he was and I said, "Oh he took so and so home." She got a shocked expression on her face and said, "He doesn't know the area very well, this is going to be interesting." When Ken finally came back, he was laughing and said, "I never thought I was going to get back here, were you worried?" We all laughed, that was Ken, at least to me. To Maryls and his family I extend my sincere condolences. I will miss my friend, my fellow Packer and Badger football buddy, just sayin'... I have happy things to share too. Open Hands Midway has the grand opening day for our new expanded food shelf coming up on July 13. This has been a long time in the works but a very essential component for what we are doing in the community. We need volunteers to help staff the food shelf every week, a link for doing so can be found by clicking here. On May 20 the Open Hands Midway board made the decision that our meal programs will be served inside moving forward. We first took a poll of our volunteers and heard them say they thought it was a great idea. We were just realizing the incredible amount of work it takes to haul and set up all the tables, chairs, tents, etc. outside each and every week. There will be one exception. During the time we hold our annual Produce Distribution we will serve the meal outside so that everything is in one place for our guests. And we also have the option to serve outside when we have our YouthWorks kids back next summer for 8 weeks. We are also excited that we will actually get to hold our annual golf and dinner fundraiser this year. All the information and the registration flyer is available on our website on the 'Calendar and Events' tab. This also means I have to actually get my golf clubs out and try hitting some golf balls, something I did not do once in 2020. I would rather ride my bike, just sayin'... Speaking of biking, earlier this month I had the joy of taking 11 days off from work! I had the most beautiful weather week in a long time. As an avid bike rider I spent every day biking, logging 254 miles riding old familiar trails and new exciting trails. I am blessed that I am able to ride and that Minnesota has so many wonderful trails for biking, just sayin'... I hope you will take the opportunities presented here to join us for our 6th Annual Golf & Dinner Fundraiser on Sunday, July 25; consider volunteering at our newly expanded food shelf; and/or donate food to the food shelf. We are so grateful for the continued support we receive from those who believe in the work and mission we do in our community. Thank you for helping us help our neighbors in need, just sayin'...

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