Community Donations And Volunteers Power Brown Bag Lunch Program

In the photo: Barb Thill, coordinator of The Salvation Army Brown Bag Lunch Program hands a lunch to Captain Food.  Community donations and volunteer power the Brown Bag Lunch Program that packs and distributes free cold lunches to four locations Tuesdays and Thursdays through August 25. Contact The Salvation Army to help. 

Fond du Lac’s oldest summer brown bag lunch program feeds eligible children and their families free  every Tuesday and Thursday  through August 25.  Brown Bag Lunch Coordinator Barb Thill leads The Salvation Army Brown Bag Lunch Program which packed 13 tons of food into 13,700 lunches last year.  This tremendous tradition launched in 1993.  2,600 lunches were packed that first year; each subsequent summer, the program increased.  This year’s projected total is 14,000.

This mammoth undertaking succeeds because of community volunteers and donations, Thill and Salvation Army Social Services Director Ron Jacobson emphasizes.  The operation is headquartered in The Salvation Army’s 237 N. Macy St. Fellowship Hall.  Assembly begins at 8:30 am.  By 11:15 am, lunches are ready to serve at Lakeside Garden Apartments, Church of Peace, and Maplewood Commons;  at, 11:30 am The Salvation Army Fellowship Hall gives out lunches.  

Volunteers, ages 5 – 80, sign up and help.  Log onto (search Fond du Lac). Through community donations, each lunch includes a peanut butter or meat sandwich, fruit, chips/snack and a beverage.  Faris Gourmet Popcorn, Brandon Meats & Sausage, Village Hearth, Kwik Trip, A to Z Vending, Sabish Middle School, Holy Family Religious Ed Program and Charity Club contributes ingredients; A& W supplies the bags; Quad Graphics is collecting peanut butter and jelly. Open Road Harley-Davidson, Open Road Chapter, Ladies of Harley, Philly’s on Fourth, Loaves & Fishes, FDL Area Foundation, SIGMA donated lunch money. 

This year, two Brown Bag Lunch locations offer free activities. Pier staff and Morning Rotary members encourage kids picking up Brown Bag Lunches at Maplewood Commons to picnic and read with them from 11:00 am to Noon.  This service runs each Tuesday and Thursday until August 25.  The Salvation Army hosts summer archery (grades 3 – 12) Tuesdays from 1-2 pm, June 21 through August 9 in The Salvation Army gym and Vacation Bible School for grades K-5, July 25 – 29.  This year’s theme is “Cave Quest.”   Prior sign- ups are required.

Contact The Salvation Army, 237 N. Macy St. Fond du Lac; 920/923-8220;  on Facebook ; at and, search Fond du Lac.