April P.O.W.W.O.W. best yet for Safford Lions

Safford Lions Club member Carloyn Vessels fills a bag with Roma tomatoes while fellow member John Stewart gets ready to load produce into the next vehicle during a previous Produce on Wheel Without Waste event in the Home Depot parking lot. - David Bell Photo/Gila Valley Central

THATCHER — Members of the Safford Lions Club were concerned that holding a produce distribution event on the Saturday before Easter could result in too much left-over fruits and vegetables.

They needn’t have worried, because the service club was emptied of all it had with nearly an hour left to go during April’s Produce on Wheels Without Waste event Saturday morning.

“Oh, this was one of the best P.O.W.W.O.W.’s we’ve had, especially since COVID broke out,” said Jeri Gibbs, event chair for the Lions Club. “Anytime we can get more customers as possible and run out of food like this, it’s great.”

For a $12 donation, residents could receive up to 70-pounds of produce, or 140 pounds for a $20 donation. In addition, participants received a free commodities box from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which contained perishable items such as milk, eggs and meat.

The next P.O.W.W.O.W. will take place Saturday, May 1, from 7-10 a.m. or while supplies last, in the parking lot of the Home Depot store in Thatcher.

While the Safford Lions Club and Borderlands— the supplier of the produce —typically take off during the hot months of summer, Gibbs said there is a possibility of one more P.O.W.W.O.W.  in June.