Des Moines, IA - Leading food security advocates from throughout the US and Canada will meet to discuss strategies for taking advantage of the current surge in interest among policymakers and the public for healthy and local foods. The role of health care reform in driving change in the food system is just one example of a topic to be discussed at the conference.

"Sodexo is pleased to continue its sponsorship of the Community Food Security Coalition's annual conference," said Arlin Wasserman, Sodexo's vice president for sustainability & corporate social responsibility. "We are committed to fostering a more sustainable food system and this conference is an important source of dialogue on how to promote healthy and sustainable food choices."

In addition to the numerous panels and workshops, the conference seeks to "walk the talk" by minimizing food waste and serving Iowa-grown or raised products. Organizers see celebration of the gift of food?an expression of relationships between people, land, and animals - as an important element of food security.

"Obesity costs our country $147 billion per year ," said Andy Fisher, executive director of the Community Food Security Coalition. "Increasing access to healthy affordable food is an important strategy to reducing obesity and its costs to the nation. CFSC sponsors annual conferences as a tool for sharing information among community leaders who helping to build healthy farms, communities, landscapes and individuals."

Sodexo, Inc. ( is a leading integrated facilities management services company in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico, with $7.7 billion (USD) in annual revenue and 120,000 employees. Sodexo serves more than ten million customers daily in corporations, health care, long term care and retirement centers, schools, college campuses, government, and remote sites. Sodexo, Inc., headquartered in Gaithersburg, Md., is a member of Sodexo Group, and funds all administrative costs for the Sodexo Foundation (, an independent charitable organization that, since its founding in 1999, has made more than $11 million in grants to fight hunger in America. Visit the corporate blog at


The Bettendorf Chamber of Commerce will host a City Candidates Forum on Wednesday, October 14, at the Bettendorf Public Library.  The forum will begin at 7pm.  Dave Millage, Chamber Government Committee Chair, will be our moderator.  Open seats this year are in the 2nd, 4th, and one at-large.  Candidates are:

  • Scott Naumann, 2nd Ward Alderman

  • Greg Adamson, 4th Ward Alderman

  • Patricia Malinee, 4th Ward Alderman

  • Judy Gackle, Alderman-At-Large

  • Ronald Solt, Alderman-At-Large

  • Tim Stecker, Alderman-At-Large

The event is sponsored by The Electric Doctor and Russell Electric and is open to the public.

In May, volunteers from Modern Woodmen, Genesis and other local organizations put together hundreds of Jared Boxes at Modern Woodmen Park. These Jared Boxes were donated to hospitals and included toys and games for ill children.

We were recently informed that this volunteer project won a national award from the National Fraternal Congress of America, who organizes the national Join Hands Day efforts. Only 10 project were chosen nationwide, so this is wonderful news.

In addition to a plaque, we will receive $1,000 to use for next year's Join Hands Day project.

Join Hands Day project in Quad Cities receives national recognition


Local group receives $1,000 for making "Jared Boxes"

A group of volunteers in the Quad Cities was recognized by the National Fraternal Congress of America (NFCA) for its exceptional volunteer project on May 2, 2009 - Join Hands Day. This was one of only 10 projects nationwide honored as Excellence Award winners.

The 10 awardees were selected from hundreds of volunteer projects that emphasized youth and adult partnerships on Join Hands Day. Each award-winning project will receive $1,000 and a plaque. The award money will be saved to use as seed money for a Join Hands Day 2010 project in the Quad Cities.

At Modern Woodmen Park, Modern Woodmen members were joined by Quad Cities River Bandits, Genesis Health System, Scott County DAV/Auxiliary, Cub Scouts, 4-H, Girl Scouts, St. Paul the Apostle School. More than 151 youth and 209 adults made 425 Jared Boxes, shoebox-sized containers filled with toys, games and crafts for children who find themselves in hospitals, bereavement and trauma support.

A panel of independent judges selected this year's top projects. The judges selected the winners based on the project's uniqueness, its youth involvement, recruitment, publicity and the value of the project to people and the community.

Sponsored by Modern Woodmen and America's fraternal benefit societies, Join Hands Day is designed to bring youth and adults together to plan and implement volunteer service projects in their communities. As the generations work side by side, they learn more about each other, sparking a new level of understanding and respect.

"In its 10 years JOIN HANDS DAY has really come into its own. Communities are developing this year's event based on previous projects to further enhance the community and relationships begun a year ago," said Joseph J. Annotti, NFCA President and CEO.

Since its conception in 1999, JOIN HANDS DAY has awarded 100 Excellence Awards. This is the final year for this award program.

About the NFCA

The 123-year-old NFCA unites 65 not-for-profit fraternal benefit societies operating in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Canada.  The association represents 9.3 million fraternalists in 37,000 local chapters, making it one of America's largest member-volunteer networks.  Fraternal benefit societies provide their members with leadership, social, educational, spiritual, patriotic, scholarship, financial and volunteer-service opportunities.  Combined, the NFCA's member-societies maintain more than $353 billion of life insurance-in-force and, in 2008 alone, contributed almost $424 million to charitable and fraternal programs, and volunteered nearly 94 million hours for community-service projects.  These statistics demonstrate the commitment that fraternals make to those in need and exemplify the true meaning of the NFCA signature phrase:  Joining Hands to Touch Lives.  For more information, visit the NFCA's Web site at

MOLINE, ILLINOIS - WQPT, Quad Cities PBS will host WQPT Trivia Night on Friday, November 13, 2009 at 6:00 p.m. with trivia starting at 7:00 p.m. at the SouthHall at Highland Park Bowl. There will be cash prizes beginning at $160 for First Place, $80 for Second Place and $40 for Third Place winners.  The Highland Park Bowl is located at 4204 Avenue of the Cities, Moline, Illinois by the Hy-Vee.

Trivia Night is a great way to prove how smart you are while having loads of fun with family and friends. Guests are encouraged to bring their own food and beverages are available through Highland Park Bowl. There will be 50/50 raffles and mulligans. Call WQPT at 309-796-2424 to reserve your table. Tables are $80 (8 people per table).

WQPT is your local Public Television station located on the campus at Black Hawk College in Moline, Illinois.

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Bettendorf, IA - Mel Foster Co. is partnering with Mulligan's Valley Pub in Coal Valley to collect canned food items for the 2009 Student Food Drive.  Mel Foster Co. is participating in the Student Hunger Drive Corporate Challenge and is looking to surpass last year's second place.

To help efforts, Mel Foster Commercial Real Estate agent, Pieter Hansen, who also owns Mulligan's Valley Pub, graciously partnered with Mel Foster Co. to help support the Student Food Drive, which greatly impacts our community.  Mulligan's Valley Pub is known for Taco Tuesdays and their support of great causes in our communities and for our residents in need.

The community is invited to Mulligan's Valley Pub at 310 West 1st Avenue, Coal Valley, Illinois for Taco Tuesday on October 13 from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.  Patrons can enjoy a taco dinner for every donation of eight (8) canned food items or more per person.  Cash donations are also accepted.

Mulligan's provides Tacos for Charity every Tuesday but this is the first time they are accepting canned foods as donations.  "I think this is a perfect way support the Student Food Drive as well as providing tacos as a reward for your generosity.  This event has the potential to raise thousands of pounds of food for our local food bank," mentioned Pieter Hansen.

Kris Ratigan, Marketing Director, says "Mel Foster Co. is proud to once again be participating in the Student Food Drive Corporate Challenge.  We are excited to be partnering with Mulligan's Valley Pub in supporting the Student Food Drive, knowing how great a need the food bank serves in our communities."


MONTICELLO, IA? On Sunday, October 11, 2009, the East Central Federation and Cedar Valley Callers Association will sponsor the 20th anniversary of the Annual Square Dance Benefit for Camp Courageous of Iowa.  The calling begins at 1:30 p.m. and ends at 4 p.m. in the main lodge at Camp Courageous.

Callers and cuers are invited from all over eastern Iowa and the surrounding areas. Dance clubs as well as individuals and couples are welcome to enjoy the afternoon dancing or just observing in the spacious camp lodge. Tours will be available for anyone interested in seeing all that camp offers including the camp train, the barn and the indoor swimming pool! Admission fee is a donation to camp. Participants are asked to bring along cookies, or a snack to share---beverages are provided.

Camp Courageous of Iowa is a year-round recreational and respite care facility for individuals with mental and physical disabilities, located near Monticello, Iowa. The camp was built and continues to operate on donations, without government support, without formal sponsorship, and without paid fundraisers. In 2008, the camp served over 5,000 campers with special needs.


What:  the Zion Lutheran Church Blood Drive

When:  Wednesday, October 14th from 3:30 pm until 6:30 pm.

Where:  Downstairs  in the Fellowship Hall, 1216 W. 8th St, Davenport

Appointments: To donate, call Wanda McDonnell at 563-381-3893

About the Drive:  Donors who last gave blood on or before August 19, 2009 are eligible.

About Donating:  Blood donation is a safe, simple procedure that only takes about an hour.  Donors must be at least 16 years old, in good health and weigh at least 110 pounds.  A Bllood Donor coard or other photo I.D. is required to donate; 16 year old donors must present a signed parental consent form available from the Blood Center or for download from Controlled high blood pressure and diabetics are acceptable.

About MVRBC:  Mississippi Regional Blood Center is the exclusive blood provider to Unity HealthCare, Muscatine and Genesis and Trinity Medical Centers, Quad Cities.  For more information about the MVRBC, see the River Cities' Reader issue #731 (July 22, 2009).

The Mississippi Valley Growers' Association announces the following October special events at your local Farmers' Market - don't miss the fun, excitement and the locally grown fresh produce.

? The Davenport Farmers' Market at NorthPark Mall, 8:00 am until Noon, East of J. C. Penney's

  • October 3:  Apple Cider Press, taste some delicious fresh pressed cider
  • October 10:  Wine, grape juice and cheese tasting, compliments of our vendors
  • October 17:  Caramel Apple Day - don't leave without your apple for the day
  • October 24:  Carved Pumpkin contest - kids - don't miss out on the fun!
  • October 31:  Costume Party, get an early start for Halloween at the market.

? And, at the Bettendorf Market on Thursday, October 8th from 2:00 pm until 6:00 pm, the Annual Wiener and S'mores Roast.  The Bettendorf Market is located at 23rd and State Streets, parking is behind the vendors if you enter from the light at 23rd Street.

? Coming in November - the Indoor Market.  More details to follow.


Kuhl's Under The Sun is holding their annual Scarecrowrow on Friday, Oct 9th (9am-6pm), Satuday, Oct 10th (9am-4pm) and Sunday, Oct 11th (11am-4pm).

Come out to 1850 South 1st Street in Eldridge for antiques, one-of-a-kind gifts, artisans, handcrafted gifts, Tabor Home Wines, pumpkins, gourds, corn shocks, food tent and more tents in the gardens. Baked goods from Northridge Community Church and the 4-H girls. Plan on lunch at the farm!

For safety concerns, no pets are allowed. Free parking is provided.

For more information, go to

The Quad City Symphony Orchestra launches its 2009-10 season with a concert showcasing the talent and versatility of the 95-year-old organization. This concert features the intricate and concise music of Mozart juxtaposed with the sweeping  majesty of Mahler. These concerts will be performed on October 3 and 4, and are sponsored in memory of Katherine Stafford, by her family. Saturday evening's concert will be held at the Adler Theatre in Davenport at 8 PM, and followed on Sunday afternoon at 2 PM at Centennial Hall in Rock Island. Tickets for this concert can be purchased in person at the QCSO Box Office, 327 Brady Street in Davenport, by phone at 800.745.3000 or online at

A gulf of 100 years lay between Mozart's final symphony and Mahler's first. In 1788, as Mozart was scoring his final and perhaps greatest symphony, the romantic period in music was yet to be born. By 1888, when Mahler was completing work on his symphonic premier, composers found themselves in a world just beginning to challenge the now established the romantic movement. In both cases, the powerful music created by these two masters merits the celestial monikers with which they have come to be associated: the primordial Titans of Greco-roman mythology and the Olympian god Jupiter who led their overthrow.

On the Thursday before the concerts, Quad Citians will get the chance to hear Music Director Mark Russell Smith give his insights into the upcoming performance at Inside the Music. Expert and novice alike will enjoy this casual musical conversation at the Figge Art Museum in Davenport from 5:00 to 6:30 PM on Thursday, October 1. This event is free to the public, with wine and cheese provided.

Mark Russell Smith will also be available at Kai Swanson's Concert Conversations, held an hour before each of the weekend's concerts. At Concert Conversations the audience members will be given a quick tour of highlights from the program they are about to experience. New this season, concert conversations will be held in the concert hall itself. This look into the background of the concert's repertoire, sponsored by Rich James of Wells Fargo Advisors, is in its tenth year and has become an audience favorite.

Also new this season, audience members are invited to reminisce about the amazing performance at the Woodfire Grill, 131 West 2nd St., Davenport, immediately following the Saturday night concert. Mingle with Mark Russell Smith, musicians from the QCSO, and sometimes even the guest artist. You never know who will be there! The evening promises free hors d'oeuvres, cash bar, and remarkable repartee.