Free meals being offered this summer

Brown County Schools will continue serving meals weekdays throughout the summer to any child 18 and younger, no questions asked.

For the fourth year, the district is receiving federal funds through the U.S. Department of Agriculture to operate a Summer Food Service Program. It’s available only to districts with more than half of their students enrolled in the free and reduced-price lunch program.

Brown County’s lunch assistance rate for the 2015-16 school year was 52.6 percent, said Food Service Director Jason Kirchhofer.

More than 90 students each week also were receiving backpacks of food to take home each weekend from Brown County Weekend Backpack volunteers. That program does not operate during the summer.

The three Summer Food Service serving sites this year are Brown County High School, the Brown County YMCA and Forest Hills Apartments.

St. David’s Episcopal Church in Bean Blossom will not be a site this summer due to “sporadic” attendance, Kirchhofer said. Forest Hills will be a closed site, open only to residents of the complex in Gnaw Bone. The high school and YMCA will serve all children — even those who are not Brown County residents.

The high school and Forest Hills will serve breakfast and lunch; the YMCA will only offer lunch.

Adults can eat as well for $3.10 per meal.

Kirchhofer said the breakfast option started late in last summer’s program when staff noticed students were still hungry.

At the high school alone, last summer, 60 to 100 meals were served every day, Kirchhofer said. The YMCA averaged 10 to 15 per day.

Lunches will contain protein, grains, fruits, vegetables and milk. Meals must be eaten on site and cannot be taken home.

Serving at the high school will run weekdays from May 31 to July 29, with no meal service during the week of July 4. At the YMCA and Forest Hills, service will start the week of June 6.

Serving times vary at each location.

In addition to feeding individual students, the program will serve children attending YMCA and Brown County Parks & Recreation summer camps.

Summer Food Service Program

Brown County High School

Breakfast: 9:30 to 10 a.m.

Lunch: 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Meals served weekdays May 31 to July 29; no service week of July 4.

Brown County YMCA

Lunch: 11:20 to 11:45 a.m.

Meals served weekdays June 6 to July 29; no service week of July 4.

Forest Hills Apartments

Breakfast: 9:30 to 10 a.m.

Lunch: 11 to 11:30 a.m.

This site is open to Forest Hills residents only.

Meals served weekdays June 6 to July 29; no service week of July 4.

Price at all sites: Free for children younger than 18, $3.10 for adults

Sara Clifford has been raising a family in Brown County since 2005 and leading the Brown County Democrat since late 2009. In addition to editor, she is the beat reporter for town government and writes columns, features and general news stories.