KSTP: Preparing to Move

KSTP: Moving Day

Cub Food and Target in Chaska

Posted: November 19, 2016

A special thanks to Cub Food and Target in Chaska for donating approximately 90,000 lbs. of food each over the past 12 months. This amount of food makes up a large portion of what is needed each year to help people in need.  Without these types of large donations the Bountiful Basket would need to purchase food in able to meet the need.

Lions donate $10,500 to food shelf

Posted: Tuesday, March 27, 2012 8:38 am

The Chaska Lions Club has donated $10,500 to the Bountiful Basket Food Shelf of Eastern Carver County.

The proceeds from the Chaska volunteer organization were created in part by a golf tournament held at the Chaska Town Course.

“I have been a member 48 years,” said Lion member Dale Diedrick. “This is as satisfying donation that I’ve ever been involved with.”

The funds will be utilized primarily to purchase food for over 300 families that visit the Bountiful Basket on Bavaria Road in Chaska each month.

The month of March is Minnesota Food Share month. “The Chaska Lions continue to have a strong need to give back to community with our club focus now being on hunger and homelessness,” stated Chaska Lions President Jay Rohe.

His bad break was her good break for local food shelf

By Unsie Zuege uzuege@swpub.com | Posted: Wednesday, April 4, 2012 4:30 pm

Father Bob White of St. Victoria Catholic Church set out the challenge for his confirmation class.

The student who brought in the most food donations for the Bountiful Basket Food Shelf could decorate the fresh white cast of his broken arm.

Hannah Erickson, a ninth-grader at Chaska High School, took the challenge to heart. Last Wednesday night, she enlisted  her entire confirmation class to gather the results of her neighborhood canvassing. Students went out to the church parking lot and helped her and her father, Greg, carry in 37 grocery bags of food items for the food shelf.

“I thought about what it would be like to have money be tight, and not have food in the house,” Hannah explained to her confirmation class when youth leader Nick Tofteland asked her about her motivation for the project. “What if I didn’t have parents to take care of me and put food on the table? And I heard that donations are lower than they have been because fewer people are able to make donations to the food shelves because of the economy.”

The food drive challenge took place in March, which was food share month at St. Victoria. And it coincided with Father Bob’s skiing accident.

“Oh yes,” Father Bob said, by phone. “I went skiing to that exotic place called Buck Hill. I’m a regular skier, and I go every Wednesday. On Feb. 15, I was there, and ran into a snowboarder who was about 200 pounds plus. He saw me coming and rolled but I caught my wrist and it snapped. It was my right wrist. Fortunately, I’m left handed.”

Surgery and five pins later, Father Bob is on the road to recovery. When it was time to apply his cast, he turned down fluorescent pink, blue, green, and all the other trendy colors.

“Absolutely not,” Father Bob told the medical technician. “I want white. I’ll tell you why.

“The confirmation kids will bring canned goods for the food shelf,” he explained. “The one that brings in the most gets to decorate my cast for Easter.”

The technician rolled his eyes, but Father Bob insisted. “I want it to look like a white Easter egg,” he recalls saying.

Hannah’s father, Greg, commented on his daughter’s determination.

“Every night after school/softball practice and before homework she grabbed some grocery bags,” Erickson said, “and hit the street until dark. It’s been amazing to watch. It’s been amazing to see how generous people have been.”

Last Wednesday night, Hannah and Father Bob sat at the table in the church’s lounge area. While the rest of the confirmation class was in the classroom with Tofteland, Hannah unpacked her arsenal of colored markers, glitter gel, and paint.

“You had a design all planned ahead of time,” Father Bob said approvingly, as Hannah carefully drew, then painted and embelished his cast. “I always wanted a tattoo. This is even better.”

Father Bob has kept the cast under wraps and plans to reveal it at Easter services this Sunday.

Growing program feeds growing need

Tom Redman | Posted: Monday, March 5, 2012 1:21 pm

On Feb. 18 the Bountiful Basket Food Shelf of Eastern Carver County moved to its new location at 1600 Bavaria Road in Chaska.

Thanks goes out to the many individuals, young and old alike, that helped with the morning move. A special note of appreciation to Cooper’s, Appliance Service and the Chaska Public Works Department for their assistance with the move.

The Bountiful Basket Food Shelf serves individuals and families who are in need of food assistance from the communities of Carver, Chanhassen, Chaska, Victoria and adjacent townships. The food shelf is 100 percent volunteer managed and operated and has been in operation since 2007. At the present time over 60 individuals give freely of their time to assist in helping customers.

It seems appropriate that the food shelf move to its permanent home coincided with the start of a new Lenten season. All food shelves are dependent on the caring and giving nature of individuals, churches, businesses, and organizations who believe that any measurement of our communities success is predicated in part on what we do to help our neighbors and friends who are in need.

In January of 2012 over 26,000 pounds of food was distributed to over 1,200 individuals. On the first day of operation at the new site over 30 families were assisted with 11 being first time visitors. The need is there and it is not lessening.

Minnesota Food Share facts show that in 2010 that there were more than three million visits to Minnesota food shelves. There are many measures that reflect the impact of hunger and poverty in the state of Minnesota.

From 2008 to 2012, visits to food shelves increased by 62 percent statewide and 39 percent of these visits were for children under 18 and 9 percent for the elderly.

Minnesota Food Share is a program of the Greater Minneapolis Council of Churches and it has conducted its food drive in March of each year for almost three decades. In 2010 the campaign raised 4.6 million pounds of food and $7.4 million with 100 percent of the cash going to purchase at Minnesota food shelves.

The Bountiful Basket is encouraging area churches, corporations and organizations to be a part of this year’s campaign. The more food and cash generated locally the more it will increase the amount of cash shared by Minnesota Food Share with Bountiful Basket.

Typically, food shelves can make a dollar stretch further than any individual dollar at a food store. If your business or group would like to be a part of this year’s Minnesota Food Share effort as it will benefit the Bountiful Basket please call (952) 556-0244 or simply drop off food at the site or checks made payable to “Bountiful Basket.”

As the Bountiful Basket moves forward in 2012 we are looking at creating a community garden on site, expanding our open hours to the first and third Saturday mornings of each month, exploring transportation routes to those who are in need, and involving more volunteers in all aspects of meeting our mission.

If you have an interest in helping or in learning more about what we do to help build community and to assist those in need please stop in and visit or call (952) 556-0244 or visit us online at www.bountifulbasketfoodshelf.org.

Thank you for caring.

Tom Redman is chairman of the Bountiful Basket Food Shelf Board.

Food shelf on the move

Mollee Francisco | Posted: Thursday, February 16, 2012 11:46 am

The Bountiful Basket Food Shelf is on the move again.

This weekend, volunteers will pack up the food at the food shelf’s existing location at the southwest corner of County Road 61 and Highway 41 and make the short trek up the hill to the old Chaska water treatment plant on Bavaria Road.

The water treatment building has been renovated by the city to provide a permanent location for the food shelf. The Bountiful Basket Food Shelf had temporarily moved into the former Snyder’s Drug building last June.

Food shelf volunteers are looking forward to having a more permanent home. “We’re extremely excited,” said Linda Frey, volunteer coordinator.


The new space comes at a time when demands on food shelves like Bountiful Basket are increasing.

“Fifty-one new families found us in January,” said Kathy Skinner, assistant director for Chaska’s Parks and Recreation depart-ment, who also sits on the food shelf’s board.

In all, nearly 400 households (representing 1,312 individuals) visited the Bountiful Basket Food Shelf in January, taking home more than 27,500 pounds of food.

“We’re averaging 360 to 400 families per month,” said Nancy Harrison, office coordinator.

Harrison said clients come from all over eastern Carver County including Chaska, Carver, Victoria, Chanhassen and East Un-ion. “There’s a lot of people suffering,” Harrison said. “We service whoever needs it.”

After providing identification and filling out a short intake form, clients are allowed to shop the food shelf once a month, taking home about a week’s worth of food.


The Bountiful Basket Food Shelf is 100 percent volunteer driven and completely dependent on donations of food and money.

“We have a great partnership with area churches,” said Tom Redman, director of Chaska’s Park and Recreation department and Bountiful Basket board member. “But we’re always looking for anyone who wants to be involved with the food shelf. It can be as simple as getting our newsletter.”

Though their job is to provide food, the food shelf also serves as a resource to point people toward other needed social services. Volunteers already know that being located in the same building as Love INC, another non-profit group dedicated to serving those in need, will provide great opportunities for their clients to get help.

“It really is a community with all these groups coming together,” said Redman.


The city is leasing the old water treatment plant to the food shelf at $2,000 a month for the first three years, and after that, rent will increase 2 percent per year. The initial lease term is for 10 years, with options to renew. The rent will help the city recoup most of the $450,000 in repairs needed on the building, including a new roof. The city also put $130,000 from the water fund toward roof work since part of the building still houses a functioning well.

The group is especially thankful to the city of Chaska for helping find them a space to call home. “There’s a flavor to Chaska you don’t find in a lot of the country,” said Harrison.

With the new doors about ready to open at 9 a.m. Feb. 20, volunteers are already looking toward the future.

Sitting in camp chairs among the empty shelves, they excitedly bat around ideas for expanded hours and transportation. An-other idea, a community garden on the plot of green north of the building, is already in the works for this summer.

“We’d like to work ourselves out of business,” said Frey. “But there’s always going to be people who need [the food shelf].”

“It can happen to any of us at any time,” agreed John Myhr, warehouse coordinator for the food shelf.

“It’s wonderful – [people] come in, in tears, and leave with a smile,” said Harrison. “We get a lot of hugs.”


Work on old water treatment plant begins

Mollee Francisco | Posted: Thursday, October 13, 2011 1:55 pm

The first component of the city’s construction project to renovate the old water treatment plant located at Engler and Bavaria is ready to begin this week, weather permitting. The building is being renovated to eventually house the Bountiful Basket Food Shelf.

According to the latest city newsletter, exterior improvements are slated to occur first, including pavement of the parking lot and grading to address storm water issues. Interior projects will begin in two to three weeks, with the goal of completion by the middle of December.

At this point, the city is busily working to have Bountiful Basket Food Shelf into its new location by January 1, 2012. The food shelf is currently located in the old Snyders building at the southwest corner of Highways 41 and 61.

Old water plant may become food shelf

Mark W. Olson | Posted: Friday, September 2, 2011 11:47 am

The city of Chaska is considering remodeling its well house building and leasing it to the Bountiful Basket Food Shelf.

The Bountiful Basket Food Shelf has bounced around Chaska a couple times – first at a Village Road location, and now at the old Snyders Drug building, at the Highway 41/County Road 61 intersection.

According to City Administrator Matt Podhradsky, the nonprofit, which operates under the umbrella of the CAP Agency, serves over 1,000 people monthly in the community.

The well house, at 1600 Bavaria Road, once functioned as Chaska’s primary water treatment center. The water treatment func-tions moved to a nearby building a few years ago, but the building still houses a well, as well as the nonprofit Love INC offices.

Podhradsky told the council about the option at a Monday night work session. The city is considering a 10-year lease, with two five-year renewable options for Bountiful Basket. The lease would be $2,000 a month – a flat rate for the first three years, then an increase of 2 percent every year after.

The well house needs to remain functioning to hold the well, Podhradsky said, but is in need of a new roof. Remodeling the build-ing to accommodate Bountiful Basket, including fixing the roof, would cost $450,000.

Podhradsky said $130,000 would come from the city’s water operating fund to replace the roof. The remaining funds would be covered by the Bountiful Basket rent, if the nonprofit stays in the building for its original 10-year lease, plus another five-year term. Other than the cost of the roof, with debt service, the city would pay $398,000 to remodel the food shelf, and would receive $400,308 from Bountiful Basket over 15 years.

Podhradsky warned the council that there’s always a chance the nonprofit wouldn’t renew its lease. The SouthWest Chamber of Commerce didn’t exercise an option to continue renting space at the Chaska History Center, he noted.

If the council gives the go-ahead, Bountiful Basket could be in the building by January, Podhradsky said.

Councilor Chris Schulz asked whether the building was made available to other tenants – an issue that came up in 2008 when Love INC moved into the building. At that time, the council directed city staff to develop a policy for leasing city buildings that would allow other groups similar opportunities.

Podhradsky said during the years the building has been vacant, several groups have expressed interest in the building – notably the Carver County Community Development Agency and a group of parents, who wanted to turn the building into a youth center. However, none of the arrangements panned out.