If you're looking for a good excuse to get out and interact with the community, Riverside Church has several opportunities next week that will benefit local charitable organizations along the way.
"COVID hit. The community has been longing for normalcy," said the Rev. Tim Dezelske, family life pastor at Riverside. "A lot of people out there are hurting, especially organizations that help others."
Love Much in Hutch will fill the week Sunday through Saturday, June 13-19, with events to offer a sense of community and address the needs of groups such as the Heart of Minnesota Animal Shelter. Resources are being gathered for other needs as well — those of a boys home and first responders, for instance. When all is said and done, organizers hope to have renewed a connection to the community after a year of pandemic precautions.
"This is our first time doing this," Dezelske said. "We're mimicking it similar to (an event) in Toledo, Ohio."
About 100 people from Riverside Church had signed up as of this past week to participate in Love Much in Hutch, but when accounting for the many donations required to make the series of events happen, the number of contributors quickly grows higher.
"We're hoping everyone in our church is involved somehow," Dezelske said. "It's all coming from people graciously donating goods."
His sermonette on Page B2 dives more into the philosophy he hopes Love Much in Hutch will encourage.
While there is a place at each event for everyone who wishes to serve, four events in particular are geared toward public participation. For more details and a full list of events, visit riversidehutch.org/love-much-in-hutch.
Following the church's prayer walks on Sunday and Monday, the 6-8 p.m. Kid's Carnival on Monday, June 14, will be the first large public-facing event of the week.
Tickets to play carnival games at Riverside Park will be sold, along with concessions. Five tickets cost $1, with games ranging from one to four tickets. Proceeds will go to Village Ranch, a nonprofit residential home in Cokato that provides support services to youth and families.
PAW PRINT FLOWERS
Riverside is teaming up with Paint Factory to offer a Wednesday, June 16, workshop at the church. Participants will be taught how to make floral paintings with help from furry friends offering paw prints.
The workshop begins at 6:30 p.m. At 7:30 p.m., pets will be welcomed in to add their paw prints as flowers. Paint will also be offered to finish the process at home with a pet. Participants without pets will be taught other methods of painting flowers.
Sign up at tinyurl.com/vayw83jc. The fee is $40. A portion of the proceeds will go to the Heart of Minnesota Animal Shelter.
SPAGHETTI, CAR WASH AND ROOT BEER
On the evening of Thursday, June 17, a pair of congruent events will provide Hutchinson residents with a chance for dinner, a treat and a clean car.
Community members can drive to Riverside Church 4-7 p.m. for a free car wash. Root beer floats will be served to those waiting for their wash to be completed.
Meanwhile, from 5 to 7 p.m., the congregation will serve a spaghetti dinner open to the community.