MIHS band to march Island-wide for food Dec. 13

Deborah Ashin
Special to the Reporter

Members of the Mercer Island High School Band will be knocking on your door Saturday, Dec. 13, to collect food for the Mercer Island Youth and Family Services (MIYFS) Food Pantry.

The 280-member Mercer Island Band is sponsoring a massive all-island “Can-a-Thon” as a way to give back to the community for its continuous and generous support. Band members will be canvassing neighborhoods across Mercer Island from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. as well as collecting food donations in front of the Mercer Island Albertson’s.

“The members of the band appreciate the incredible support they continually receive from the local community. The Can-a-Thon is their way of giving back to the community,” explained Band Director Parker Bixby. “Whether it’s performing at Friday night football games, marching in the Tournament of Roses Parade or playing at the Great Wall in China, we all recognize this couldn’t happen without this community’s financial support and encouragement.”

Individual instrument sections are covering different neighborhoods to collect as much food as possible. Donations may be left by the front door and will be picked up by band members. Residents whose homes are difficult to reach may arrange to have their donations picked-up by contacting Cathy Ramsay at or calling 236-1958.

According to Cheryl Hudson–Manriquez, of MIYFS, the food pantry is most in need of cereal, tuna, peanut butter and jelly, pasta and sauces, school lunch snacks and canned fruit. The need is immediate and growing, she explained .

“We have seen an increase of 75 percent in pantry use from 2007 to the same time in 2008,” she said.

Lauren Sadler, a senior and section leader for the trombone section, said, “As band members, we are fortunate to have incredible experiences. It’s an amazing program, and we know it wouldn’t be possible without support from our community. The Can-a-Thon is just a small way of showing our appreciation. And if the band is accepted to perform at the Inaugural Parade, we recognize it couldn’t have happened without everyone’s help.”

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