Dining Against the Odds

Phto: Katie Cavanaugh helped serve food at the top tier table at Monday night's Hunger Games Benefit Dinner. The top tier received the Surf and Turf meal which was prepared by the St. Croix Regional Technical Center's Culinary Arts Program. (Photo by Kaileigh Deacon).

By Kaileigh Deacon

 On Monday the Calais High School Student Council, National Honor Society, and Calais Middle School Student Council hosted their Annual Hunger Games dinner in the school cafeteria. For those that aren’t familiar with the event, attendees purchase a ticket and then when they arrive they select a stone from a bucket the color of the stone will determine what you will be having for dinner. Meals can range from red hot dogs and macaroni and cheese to surf and turf with each tier offering fewer meals as they went up, it is all a game of odds.  

The benefit dinner has been held for the last several years to help raise awareness about meal insecurity not just in the State of Maine but right here in Washington County as well. “I think the biggest impact of this benefit is the awareness it brings to this area,” Mary Anne Spearin the Calais Middle/High School Principal said. “It also says a lot about our community. People don’t complain about what they get for a meal they come out and their show support.” 

Every year there is a guest speaker to talk about hunger and meal insecurity and this year the person selected was Calais Elementary Principal Sue Carter. As a principal Carter sees the hunger in our schools but is also partnering with Joyce Maker to pilot a program called Second Chance Breakfast that would give students a second opportunity to receive breakfast if they miss their first.

 In addition to Sue Carter, David Sivret gave a history of the Irene Chadbourne Ecumenical Food Pantry. There was also musical entertainment for attendees while they ate. 

 “Just like cars we need our fuel to run,” Carter said. “At Calais Elementary School 70% of our students qualify for free or reduced meals.”

All the proceeds raised at Monday’s benefit go to the Irene Chadbourne Ecumenical Food Pantry in Calais to help feed local families. This year’s event raised $800 for the Food Pantry to help fight meal insecurity right in our own backyard. 

The Students of the Calais High School Student Council and National Honor Society presented David Sivret with a check for $800 to go to the Food Pantry at Monday Night's Hunger Games.  (Photo by Anne Scott).