Margaret Beuerlein, director of the Ticonderoga Food Pantry, helps with the cooking during a pancake supper hosted by the Ti Elks. The supper raised money for the pantry.
The Ticonderoga Food Pantry is preparing for its peak season. With holidays and cold weather approaching, the demand for food increases, according to officials.
“We do see new folks quite often,” said Margaret Beuerlein, pantry director, “and with the heating season about to happen we’ll no doubt see more.”
The Ticonderoga pantry is a busy place.
“We see between 85 and 100 families per month and have for about three to four years,” Beuerlein said. “Every since gas went up to about $4.00 and, of course, heating oil went up with it. This caused a true hardship for many.
“Many of our people, but not all, use food stamps,” she said. “With the price of food going higher each day, the food stamps don’t go as far as they used to. We serve people of all ages, of course, have quite a few families with children and quite a few seniors.”
Some area food pantries, like the Moriah Food Pantry, are struggling to meet demand.
“Our supply is holding,” Beuerlein said. “We do have a cut back in what we can order from the Regional Food Bank, for the same reason. They are serving more people all of the time. Thankfully, we’re doing quite well and do receive wonderful community support.”
The Ticonderoga Food Pantry got a boost Oct. 14 when the Ti Elks hosted a pancake supper to benefit the local food shelf.
Located in the basement of the First United Methodist Church at 1045 Wicker St., the pantry is sponsored by the Ticonderoga Area Clergy Association. It’s a non-denominational service open 11 a.m. to noon Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
The pantry is open to Ticonderoga and Putnam residents and follows federal income guidelines. Those guidelines start at $20,000 a year for a single person and go up to $68,000 for a family of eight. All food pantry information is strictly confidential.
People can come to the pantry once a month to get three days — nine meals — food.
Besides helping feed families, the pantry responds to local emergencies such as fires and floods.
The Ti Food Pantry has a wide range of foods, including infant formula and baby food. It also offers personal hygiene items such as soap and laundry detergent.
The Ti pantry is operated by a group of about 25 volunteers. A member of the Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York, the local pantry depends on local food drives and donations.
Also helping stock the pantry are food drives each year by local civic, youth, school and church groups. The annual Canadian Pacific Holiday Train also raised money and collects food donations for the pantry.
Beuerlein hopes all eligible people take advantage of the services offered by the food pantry.