Stamp Out Hunger drive collects over 33K pounds of food

Citizens of Austin and Albert Lea collectively donated over 33,000 pounds of food to their respective food pantries during this past weekend’s Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive.

The food drive, which is put on annually by the National Association of Letter Carriers and National Rural Carriers Association, is in its 25th year.

This year, volunteers from the National Honor Society and the Austin Chamber Ambassadors assisted the NALC.

This year, Austin residents donated 16,570 pounds of food, which will be given to the Austin Salvation Army’s food pantry. Residents of Albert Lea donated 16,468 pounds of food.

“It was a terrific food drive; very successful for both communities,” said Bob Rosel, a retired letter carrier who still coordinates the food drive.

Over the past few years, the food drive has been a friendly competition between Austin and Albert Lea, with a trophy being passed between the two cities.

This year, the trophy will return to Austin in a small ceremony at a yet-to be determined pizza restaurant, according to Rosel.

“I’m very grateful to our volunteers and those that donated,” he said. “It’s always fun to win, but the satisfaction comes from being able to provide food for the people who need it.”

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