Anytime Fitness collects cans for Living Waters

Food banks like Living Waters generally keep a full stock of canned goods, but this holiday season they've requested Thanksgiving and Christmas themed foods for their "Bags of Blessings" initiative.
Alex Mann
Managing Editor

Over the weekend local volunteers from Borger’s Anytime Fitness hosted a food collection booth just outside United in order to benefit a holiday canned food drive for Living Waters Ministries. Food banks and distributors like Living Waters are a needed resource for families across the country, but as Thanksgiving and Christmas approach, the charity hopes to offer families the holiday meals that most other Americans enjoy annually. The ‘Bags of Blessings’ program aims to distribute items like turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, cake mix, and other items to make the holidays special for those in need, and thankfully, organizations like Anytime Fitness are on hand to lend their assistance.
“They have a really good cause, and they’re well known for these bags of blessings,” says Austin Brown with Anytime Fitness, “We reached out to them and asked if they needed any help, now were trying to put together a few extra bags of blessings.” According to Austin, remembering to donate to those in need is important in all seasons, but being able to give local families and kids a Thanksgiving or Christmas is a gift that lasts a lifetime. “I think [donating] is meaningful year round, and it’s needed year round, but right now it might possibly be more important. You might be able to give something to someone who normally doesn’t get to have a great Christmas like we do. You might be able to give someone great memories for their children. Those are some of the best memories we have, and we don’t realize that some kids go without them.”
While Anytime Fitness had already collected a respectable amount of cans outside United, the food drive will continue throughout the month with other local events. “We still need everything.” Austin says, “It’s going well, we’re doing pretty good. We aren’t going to reach our goal today, but that’s the reason we have all the other events planned.” Most notably, the ‘Zombie Walk’ scheduled for Halloween Morning at Huber Park is expected to be a fun, costumed event for participants of all ages, and any family bringing a bag of canned goods is eligible to enter.
Meanwhile canned goods can be donated throughout the month at a number of locations. “They can swing down to Anytime Fitness, and we have a location in the corner set up with boxes where people can drop off, or talk to us and we can help.” Austin says, “They can also take them straight to Living Waters too.”
While remembering to purchase and drop off a few cans might not be the highest priority of anyone’s day, Austin insists it may well be the most important thing locals can do for those in need. The seemingly insignificant act of a simple donation may help to give kids a shot at lifelong memories they might otherwise miss. “Just being a part of giving those kids those memories…” He says, “Think about your childhood, and how great your Christmases were, now you can help someone you don’t even know build those memories for those kids.”