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Weekly Putnam Co. Grocery Giveaway Begins Friday

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Weekly Putnam Co. Grocery Giveaway Begins Friday

Cookeville Strong, Tennessee Tech and Putnam County have partnered to create a weekly grocery giveaway that starts Friday.

Cookeville Strong Member Katelyn Steakley said over 1,200 boxes of food and 1,200 gallons of milk will be distributed weekly for about 10 weeks.

“The food is available through a grant with the USDA called, “Farmers To Families,” Steakley said. “Essentially the grant is providing small farms some relief from COVID while also providing American families with some relief from COVID. So, all of it is American farm goods coming directly from the USDA.”

Each Friday at 10:00 a.m. participants can enter the Putnam County Fairgrounds through South Walnut to receive the food. Steakley said the service will be contactless, and drivers are asked to arrive with an empty trunk.

“We are also opening up our distribution to local nonprofits to be able to receive food first,” Steakley said. “They will be able to request the amount of food they want to get, so they can serve the groups that may not be able or have the means to come to the fairgrounds to get there food.”

Steakley said each family will receive one perishable food box and one gallon of milk, so insulated bags are encouraged for those traveling. Steakley said the county’s parks and recreation department and Tennessee Tech helped with the location and volunteers needed.

“Parks and rec helped us secure the fairgrounds, and they are going to help us get the goods off the truck. They provided us through a forklift driver and some man power,” Steakley said. “Michelle (Huddleston) at TTU Food Pantry and myself partnered to help coordinate the event. I am kind of coordinating the public side of the event, where the public will come in, and Michelle is actually coordinating the nonprofit side.”

If you run a nonprofit and wish to receive items in bulk, email Michelle Huddleston at, by Tuesday February 9th at 9:00 a.m. Steakley said goods will be served on a first come basis. The program’s end will be decided sometime in April.


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