Christian Center of Park City encourages the community to hike for hunger
The Christian Center of Park City’s annual Hike for Hunger will run from 1-6 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 8. To register, visit https://www.eventbrite.com/e/hike-for-hunger-2018-tickets-46332770564. For information visit http://www.ccofpc.org.
The Christian Center of Park City’s food bank serves more than 1,000 families each month in Park City alone, said Pete Stoughton, Christian Center of Park City’s director of programs and volunteers.
“That number is staggering, because it doesn’t include the families we serve at our Heber food bank,” Stoughton said.
To raise awareness of food insecurity in Summit and Wasatch counties, the nonprofit hosts the annual Hike for Hunger, which will celebrate its sixth year.
The event, which also includes mountain biking, will take place from 1-6 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 8, at Deer Valley’s Snow Park Lodge.
The afternoon will start with hiking and biking at 1 p.m., Stoughton said.
“Deer Valley is such a beautiful venue for both hiking and mountain biking,” he said. “We want to let people know that this is not a race. It’s an open event where people can hike and bike as they want.”
Hikers and bikers can choose from a variety of trails that also differ in length and difficulty.
The trails, which are accessible by chairlift, include the easy, 1-mile Nabob loop, the moderate, 2.5 mile Sultan out and back, and the difficult, 4.5 mile Silver Lake loop.
Those who don’t hike can take a round-trip chair ride up and down the mountain, Stoughton said.
Individual adult tickets are $30. Kids tickets are $10. Family tickets for up to five family members, not a group of friends, are $75.
The ticket prices include the chairlift to the trails, food — donated by Nicholas & Company and prepared by Deer Valley — kids and adult drinks and live music, Stoughton said.
“We would like to see more kids on the trails.” he said. “This is about getting people out to raise awareness about hunger issues, and also highlight the community’s efforts to achieve zero waste by diverting food to those in need.”
By zero waste, Stoughton is referring to the “food rescues” carried out by the Christian Center’s staff and volunteers.
“We rescue nearly 1 million pounds of food every year from eight area grocery stores,” he said.
The food includes fresh produce, meat, eggs, milk, bread and snacks that the stores remove from their shelves to make room for new shipments, according to Stoughton.
“We are able to redirect the food to the families that need it,” he said.
Hike for Hunger also features a live music program that will start with local band Stone Mountain at 4 p.m., and headliner — the award-winning bluegrass artist Ryan Shupe at 5 p.m.
“During the concert, we’ll open up the kids’ area,” Stoughton said. The area will include face painting, a bounce house and lawn games, he said.
“People can bring food to donate if they want, but we just want people to come and get a broader understanding of the scope that we’re doing to end hunger in our community,” Stoughton said.
Nearly 1,025 students who are enrolled in Park City schools qualify for free or reduced-priced lunches, according to a Christian Center of Park City study.
“That translates to one in five kids who meet the federal requirement of poverty,” he said. “Many of these children’s parents are working two and three jobs. Hopefully, our efforts will make a difference.”
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