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Birthday Bash Twist: Area Kid Gather Donations for Food Pantry Instead Of Gifts

Birthday Bash Twist: Area Kid Gather Donations for Food Pantry Instead Of Gifts

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Alex Kuphal knew there were many things he could do to celebrate his 12th birthday party.

Even with places like Brunswick Zone and a movie theater right in his backyard, the Lake in the Hills sixth-grader decided to bypass the routine and draw inspiration from his younger sister’s recent celebration.

When 20 guests arrived at Kuphal’s door on Feb. 28, they were sorted into groups, assigned a chaperone driver, handed a map and challenged to see which team could accumulate the most points — in the fastest time — by collecting food and personal hygiene items for the Algonquin-Lake in the Hills Food Pantry .

“We walked house to house for about two hours,” said Alex Kuphal, a student at Westfield Community School in Algonquin.

Household items like paper towels and toilet paper, which are some of the more-needed items at the pantry, were worth the most points. Food items and canned goods carried varying points.

By the end of the “race,” the partygoers collected 275 pounds of donations for the pantry, said Melody Kuphal, Alex’s mom.

“After they collected the food, all the groups brought their donations to the pantry where the kids were given a tour,” said Melody Kuphal. “They loved it. Afterwards, we had pizza and cake.”

When deciding on the birthday theme, the mother and son decided to go with a race contest to appeal to the middle-school guests. The chaperone drivers drove alongside the kids as they walked so the participants could drop their donations in the car.

“I knew we needed to have an edge to it,” Melody Kuphal said. “That’s where we came up with the concept of making it a competition.”

Melody Kuphal also included a peewee girls’ team to accommodate Alex’s younger sister, Alyssa, and his guests’ younger siblings. In addition to helping the pantry and providing a challenge to the kids, the mother, who's also a music instructor, said it was a very affordable party. (more)

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Article by Stephanie Price, Huffington Post | Read full article here

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