For the 30th year, the U.S. Postal Service will have its "Stamp Out Hunger" food drive this Saturday, May 14. They call it the nation's largest single-day food drive. And, again, it includes Hamilton, Montana.

The Hamilton Post Office is coordinating the drive in Ravalli County. The folks who have participated in previous years know the drill - fill a bag with non-perishable food items and leave it by the mailbox Saturday morning. As the letter carrier comes by, they will pick up the bag (along with delivering any mail you might have, of course). This year, the food collected in the area will go the Haven House food bank in Hamilton.

What is non-perishable?

The national organizers have posted a few tips to help you decide what to put in the bag. They especially suggest:

  • Canned Meats like tuna, chicken and salmon, canned and boxed meals like soup and mac-and-cheese, canned or dried vegetables and fruit, boxed cereal, oatmeal, pasta, pancake mix, peanut butter and fruit juices.
  • What shouldn't be left at the mailbox?

  • Any cans that are damaged or unlabeled, containers made of glass, homemade or noncommercial food items, expired food, alcoholic liquids, and already opened boxes. Of course, no perishable items - lettuce, for instance.
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    This is a free service that is really convenient to those of us that still have mail delivery. It's very popular in rural areas with individual mailboxes. And it's not supported by tax dollars. There are quite a few nationwide partners, including the National Association of Letter Carriers and the UFCW.

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