North Kawartha Food Bank thanks community for support after loss of Sayers grocery store in Apsley

Many people and businesses stepped up after December fire destroyed the only grocery store in North Kawartha Township

Residents, local businesses, and community-minded corporations stepped up to support North Kawartha Food Bank after fire destroyed Sayers in Apsley, the only grocery store in the township. For example, Campbell's donated five skids of food to the food bank. (Photo courtesy of North Kawartha Food Bank)
Residents, local businesses, and community-minded corporations stepped up to support North Kawartha Food Bank after fire destroyed Sayers in Apsley, the only grocery store in the township. For example, Campbell's donated five skids of food to the food bank. (Photo courtesy of North Kawartha Food Bank)

North Kawartha Food Bank in Apsley has issued a public thank you to all those who stepped up to help after the town lost its only grocery store — including year-round and seasonal residents, local and corporate businesses, and community organizations.

In the early morning of Saturday, December 5th, Sayers Independent Food Town in Apsley was devastated by a fire. The family-owned grocery store was the only one in North Kawartha Township, which has around 2,300 year-round residents and around 12,000 seasonal residents.

“The word spread as quickly as the flames and by the next evening a group of concerned citizens met via Zoom to discuss the implications and methods to help the community, the Sayers family and their employees,” says Diane Rothnie, treasurer of the North Kawartha Food Bank, in an email to kawarthaNOW.

On December 5, 2021, a fire raged through Sayers Independent Food Town in Apsley, destroying the town's only grocery store that also served the residents of North Kawartha Township. The Sayers family intends to rebuild and reopen. (Photo courtesy of North Kawartha Food Bank)
On December 5, 2021, a fire raged through Sayers Independent Food Town in Apsley, destroying the town’s only grocery store that also served the residents of North Kawartha Township. The Sayers family intends to rebuild and reopen. (Photo courtesy of North Kawartha Food Bank)

Rothnie says the committee still meets weekly, and will continue to do so until the Sayers family rebuilds and reopens the grocery store.

“Community residents, both full and part-time, community organizations, and community-minded corporations were at the ready to help financially, with food donations, with deliveries, and with fundraising,” Rothnie says.

Here are some examples of the donations to the food bank:

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  • Loblaw’s Real Canadian Superstore in Peterborough donated $5,000 worth of food products.
  • Campbell’s donated five skids of food.
  • Kawartha Dairy and Gay Lea donated butter.
  • Apsley Veterinary Services donated many bags and cans of pet food.
  • Peterborough musician Drew Phillips held a virtual Christmas concert, raising more than $2,000.

“Our team of volunteers and clients would like to thank all the individuals, lake associations, and the many companies for your generosity and thoughtfulness,” Rothnie says.

“We are so blessed to be living in such a caring and generous community of concerned citizens.”

A delivery of donated food arrives from Loblaw's Real Canadian Superstore in Peterborough. (Photo courtesy of North Kawartha Food Bank)
A delivery of donated food arrives from Loblaw’s Real Canadian Superstore in Peterborough. (Photo courtesy of North Kawartha Food Bank)
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Bobcaygeon-based Kawartha Dairy, along with Gay Lea, donated butter to the North Kawartha Food Bank. (Photo courtesy of North Kawartha Food Bank)
Bobcaygeon-based Kawartha Dairy, along with Gay Lea, donated butter to the North Kawartha Food Bank. (Photo courtesy of North Kawartha Food Bank)
Peterborough musician Drew Phillips held a virtual Christmas concert and raised $2,004.23 for the North Kawartha Food Bank. (Photo: Drew Phillips / Facebook)
Peterborough musician Drew Phillips held a virtual Christmas concert and raised $2,004.23 for the North Kawartha Food Bank. (Photo: Drew Phillips / Facebook)

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