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Second Harvest Reopens after Snow Closes Doors to Customers

Second Harvest's food pantry reopened after a two day hiatus because of the snow. Staff expected a big turnout, but business started slower than usual.
(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) Second Harvest's food pantry reopened after a two day hiatus because of the snow. Staff expected a big turnout, but business started slower than usual.

St. Joseph resident Bernice Dunleavy shopped for some much needed groceries at Second Harvest, minutes after the organization reopened to the public.

"My hours got cut at work so I need some little odds and ends," Dunleavy said.

Second Harvest closed on Tuesday and Wednesday because of weather, meaning those that depend on them for groceries couldn't get what they needed.

"My pantry is pretty bare at home right now," she said.

And Dunleavy isn't the only one.

"We see a spike in those that need our services anytime the kids are out of school, especially those that have children," said Tamara Grubb, Director of Operations for Second Harvest.

The food pantry opens at 8 a.m. on Fridays and either 11 or noon other days of the week.

Second Harvest prepared for a rush of visitors to accommodate the expected demand. Workers said some days, people line up down the street waiting for them to open. But when their store opened its doors at noon, only a few people were there waiting. Dunleavy was one of the first inside.

"I've pretty much been hibernating the past couple of days," she said.

Workers say the bitterly cold temperatures probably kept some people away.

"We have lots of folks that walk with the snow," Director of Marketing Aaron Smullin said. "I know we have people that rely on public transportation so they have to wait out at the bus stop and so we expect as the weather gets better we will see an increase of people coming in."

And for those that do brave the cold, Second Harvest will have all the essentials.

"We'll have deliveries throughout the day," Grubb said.

This means customers like Dunleavy can fill their pantry.

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