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High Five Turkey Drive to look different this year

PRESQUE ISLE, Maine — United Way of Aroostook is once again partnering with Townsquare Media to host the High Five Turkey Drive the first week of November. 

This year’s event will focus more on collecting gift cards and monetary donations instead of actual turkeys to decrease the number of times the turkeys are handled to help keep the communities healthy. The “live-on-air” event will take place at Priority Auto Sales in Houlton on Wednesday, Nov. 4; Thursday, Nov. 5 in Fort Kent at John’s Shurfine and St. John Valley Pharmacy; and again, on Friday, Nov. 6 at Star City IGA in Presque Isle. All events will run 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Last year the communities donated just over $15,000 in cash and turkeys over the three days. Recipients included pantries and organizations throughout Aroostook County. This year’s goal has been set at $18,000. 

“This event is more important than ever,” said Sarah Ennis, executive director of United Way of Aroostook. “Our area food pantries are seeing an increase in numbers due to COVID-19. Food insecurity has become a leading issue throughout Aroostook County.  We want to provide the pantries with not only the turkeys but monetary aid to stock their shelves with all the other holiday fixings. Turkeys are hard to store for the pantries but we also want to reduce the number of hands that handle the turkeys this year so we are really pushing for gift cards or monetary donations.”

Last year’s event saw many businesses and organizations make large generous donations but also many individuals with children stopping by to teach their children how to give back during the holiday season.

“It’s wonderful to see parents bringing their children and teaching their children the importance of taking care of those around you,” Ennis added.

This year those involved hope to see even more community members come out to help fill the biggest need they have seen yet during the holidays. 

If you’d like to participate, stop by one of the live on locations sites or contact United Way of Aroostook for more information, 207-764-5197.

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