Care-A-Van Ministries continues tradition of free summertime cookouts at Austin Park on Thursdays
Care-A-Van Ministries hosts free weekly Community Cookouts at Austin Park every Thursday from 5 to 8 p.m. during the Summer through Sept. 10 -- rain or shine.
The weather is great, the cookout vehicle is ready, and the grills fired up!
Each meal consists of a choice of hot dog or hamburger, potato salad, coleslaw, macaroni salad, pickles, chips, watermelon and a drink. In 2012, during the first summer of cookouts at Austin Park, 4,388 meals were served, in 2013 there were 4,936 meals served, and in 2014 the ministry served 6,426 meals.
The ministry projects to serve 7,000 meals this season as schools will be closed (no free/reduced lunches for children), individuals are still facing economic hardship, and most importantly, many just love to come out and enjoy a warm summer evening of Christian fellowship, music, and a great meal.
Each week, cookouts are highlighted with an inspirational gospel message by a different pastor from a local community church and uplifting music provided by the Care-A-Van Band.
Many organizations have come out on these Thursday nights to share information about their services, their churches, or just to fellowship with those attending the cookouts. These include: the Salvation Army; Fidelis Care; Total Freedom; Cornell Cooperative Extension; Genesee Country Church; Truth Ministries; R2R Ministries; First Baptist Church of Elba; Living Waters Apostolic Ministries; GCASA; Discovery Chapel; Eagle Fountain Fellowship; YMCA; PC Publications; Smoke Free Genesee; Mothers Supporting Children & Families; and the Genesee County Mental Health Association.
Care-A-Van encourages any organization or church that is interested in setting up a table or activity to contact Paul Ohlson at 343-0328 as we welcome those interested in serving their community through the fellowship and love of Jesus Christ. Donations for the ministry can be mailed to: P.O. Box 1611, Batavia NY 14021.