Cans Around the Oval – A CSU Tradition

27 Years – 2.1 Million Meals

Cans 2008 PosterCans Around the Oval is an example of how one person can truly make a difference. It started with one person thinking of an idea, one person putting it into motion, and a community coming together to turn it into a tradition. In 1986 the Office of Community Services (OCS), which has now grow into the office of Student Leadership, Involvement & Community Engagement (SLiCE), consisted one of graduate student and three work-study undergraduate students.

It was during this time that a graduate student, Victoria Keller, was hired to oversee the efforts of OSC. One afternoon, a journalism student asked Keller to read over a 2-page assignment she had written proposing a canned food drive, which sparked the fire for Cans Around the Oval. Keller, wanting to pursue the proposal, contacted the Food Bank’s then Director, Sandy Bowden who coined the name Cans Around the Oval. Although Sandy was too busy to be involved that first year, Keller and two other students decided to take on the efforts of orchestrating Cans Around the Oval.

The first Collection Day made a huge impact on the individuals organizing the event; each individual canned food item signified a step in the right direction. Their excitement spilled over into physically placing cans around  CSU’s Oval. Although the cans could only line ¼ of the Oval, the enthusiasm surrounding their accomplishment was strong and would become a legacy for the next 28 years.

Click here to learn more about this year’s Cans Around the Oval.

Fighting Hunger for 30 Years

1407FB_30th_logo_final_bigIn 1983, VISTA volunteer, Sandy Bowden, conducted a survey to analyze the food needs of low income and senior residents in Larimer County.  The survey verified a need for an efficient, centralized food collection and distribution resource that would avoid duplication of effort. The next year, under the leadership of Sandy Bowden, the Food Bank for Larimer County opened its doors on East Oak Street.  During the first month of operation, Sandy and her volunteers were proud to provide 3,800 pounds of food to individuals and families in need. In those days, food came primarily from rotating food drives between different houses of worship.

Over the course of 30 years, our organization has grown and changed to meet the needs of our food insecure neighbors thanks to the support of volunteers, donors, companies, families, students, and individuals like you. Since 1984, we’ve expanded our programming to include the county’s two largest food pantries, one in Loveland and one in Fort Collins. Through our Food Link program, we’ve provided food to nearly 85 non-profit partner agencies annually. And with the addition of our Kids Cafe program in 2005, we increased our focus on eliminating child hunger. But there’s still more work to do and we can’t do it alone. Thank you for your support in the past and your continued support in the future. Together, we can achieve our vision of a Hunger-free Larimer County.

Click here to learn more about the history of the Food Bank for Larimer County.


Snack2School Drive Today at Whole Foods

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To support our Kids Link snack program, the Food Bank has teamed up with The Coloradoan and Whole Foods Market Fort Collins to gather snacks for our Kids Link school snack program. Last year, our Kids Link program provided nearly 130,000 snacks with more demand than we had supply. Help us fill the bus with 250,000 individual snacks to make sure all kids in need get healthy snacks when they haven’t had enough to eat. 

Please stop by the Snack2School Drive at Whole Foods on Saturday, September 20; 10 am – 3 pm. 

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Most Needed Snack Items

* Unsweetened Applesauce Cups

* Snack Size Boxes of Raisins

* Whole Grain Granola Bars

* Whole Grain Crackers, in single serving size packages

Sponsored by

coloradoanSnack to School logobus_Page_2


You’re Invited!

SilverSoiree_Tickets_2Join Odell Brewing Company as they celebrate their 25th anniversary in style. Guests will enjoy live music from the Phuong & Friends Jazz Combo, small plates prepared by The Kitchen, Jax’s Fish House and Oyster Bar, The Moot House, and The Welsh Rabbit Cheese Shop & Bistro, and pairings of some of  rare, vintage, and Cellar Series offerings. They will also unveil our 25thanniversary release, 180 Shilling. Each ticket purchase includes a commemorative Teku glass and benefits the Food Bank for Larimer County.

Purchase tickets online!

Date: Tuesday, September 23

Time: 6-9pm

Location: Odell Brewing Company, 800 East Lincoln Ave.

Cost: $100/person; 100% of ticket sales benefit the Food Bank

Teams wanted for 30th Anniversary CAN JAM!

canjamLooking for a fun way to help the Food Bank? Grab your friends or coworkers and set up a team for our 30th Anniversary CAN JAM!

What is the CAN JAM? The CAN JAM is a 30-hour marathon sorting event in honor of the Food Bank for Larimer County’s 30th Anniversary. It is 30 hours of service that offers local businesses, community groups and individuals a fun meaningful way to combine volunteerism, team building, customer relations and philanthropy to come together to sort food for distribution to families in need! Grab 15 friends or employees and join us for food, music, and fun for a great cause!

For questions or to sign up a team, email Heather Buoniconti.



Thursday, November 6, 9am – Friday, November 7, 3pm


8 am (Thursday) – 2 pm (Friday);

Teams will work in two hours shifts


Team Sponsorship is $1,000 and includes prizes, snacks, music, recognition and more!


Help us win $60,000 to fight hunger in Larimer County


In partnership with Feeding America, Walmart is offering $3 million in grants to the 50 food banks who receive the most votes during the Walmart Fight Hunger Spark Change campaign. Voting begins on September 15 and runs through October 5.

Here’s how it works:

  • Starting Monday, September 15 and running through October 5, we need you to vote once a day at Search for the Food Bank for Larimer County to vote for us.
  • You will need a Facebook account to vote (that’s how they’re verifying one vote per day per person). If you don’t have a Facebook account, but know someone who does, please consider asking them to vote! Your info won’t be shared with Walmart and you don’t have to like the Walmart page to participate.
  • If you do have a Facebook account, please share  this with all of your Facebook friends and ask them to vote for us (you can do this from the voting site).
  • Set a calendar reminder to vote each day – it’s pretty easy and should only take a minute and it’s for a great cause!
  • When we win – the $60,000 award will support hunger-relief programs in Larimer County. $15,000 of the grant will support three of our agency partners: Community Kitchen, KidsPak and the Murphy Center. The remainder will support our programs. You can learn more about the way we’ll all use the funding on the Food Bank for Larimer County’s page on


Snack2School Drive

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To support our Kids Link snack program, the Food Bank has teamed up with The Coloradoan and Whole Foods Market Fort Collins for a month long healthy snack drive. Last year, the Food Bank’s Kids Link program provided nearly 130,000 snacks to schools in Larimer County to help children who come to school with an empty stomach because there’s no food in the home.

Our goal for the drive is to “Fill the Bus” with 250,000 individual snacks. 

3 Ways to Donate: 

1) Drop off snacks at the Coloradoan during the month of September.

2) Stop by the Snack to School. Drive at Whole Foods on Saturday, September 20; 10 am – 3 pm. Snack to School logobus_Page_3

3) Donate online:

Most Needed Snack Items

* Unsweetened Applesauce Cups

* Snack Size Boxes of Raisins

* Whole Grain Granola Bars

* Whole Grain Crackers, in single serving size packages

Sponsored by

coloradoanSnack to School logobus_Page_2

Fort Collins Breakfast Rotary Baby Food Drive

article-make-own-baby-foodThe Fort Collins Breakfast Rotary and Food Bank for Larimer County are ensuring the youngest members in Fort Collins are not being forgotten during a one-day Baby Food Drive on Saturday, September 6 from 9 am-2 pm. The Breakfast Rotary and the FBLC are challenging all Northern Colorado residents to participate in this one-day drive to provide 100 percent annual supply of baby food for the most vulnerable to hunger in our community. Read more

September is Hunger Action Month!

Download PDF

Download PDF

Take Action to Help Solve Hunger!

September is Hunger Action Month! Join us as we band together with Feeding America’s nationwide network of food banks to take action to end hunger in our nation. Hunger Action Month is your opportunity to get involved and make a lasting impact. Whether it’s by advocating and raising awareness, donating or volunteering, you can find a way that’s right for you to make a difference during Hunger Action Month. Read more

Hunger In America Study

Largest, Most Comprehensive Analysis of Charitable Food Assistance in America Reports 35,600 Served by Food Bank for Larimer County Annually…

hunger-in-americaA new study by Food Bank for Larimer County and Feeding America shows that 1 in 10 people, or an estimated 35,600 people, in Larimer County turn to the Food Bank and partner food pantries and meal service programs to feed themselves and their families. Nationally, Hunger in America 2014 found that more than 46 million people rely on the Feeding America network of food bank programs every year.

In addition to determining the number of individuals receiving assistance, the study documents household demographics and offers a snapshot of the people served by the Food Bank for Larimer County. It is also the first nationally-representative study that assesses the prevalence of past and current members of the U.S. Military and adult students receiving charitable food assistance. Read more