To fight against growing cultural divisions and feelings of hopelessness, Wendell Amstutz, founder of National Community Resource Center, and other community members organized Spirit Days, 10 days from Oct. 16 to Oct. 25, to focus on ways to grow the community and strengthen spirits in Rochester.

A kickoff virtual pep rally will be 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 16. This one-hour event will feature music from the Lourdes High School Marching Band, Chorale Arts Ensemble and local Jazz duo: Dick Rohrbaugh & Eric Straubmuller. Guest speakers include: Mayor Norton, Police Chief Jim Franklin, Jeffery Boyd (RCTC), Andre Crockett, representatives from Salvation Army plus other local community leaders.

Follow the Rochester Spirit Days Facebook page for updates.

Wondering how you can participate? See the list of events below:

DONATE TO LOCAL FOOD SHELVES

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Oct. 17, 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.; Oct. 19 - Oct. 23, 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. and 4 - 7 p.m.; Oct. 24, 11 a.m. - 7 p.m.

Details: Drop off food donations for local food shelves to the Spirit Days Warehouse at 214 N Broadway Ave (warehouse space next to Hollandberry Pannekeoken)

Contact: Spirit Day, rochesterspiritdays@gmail.com

DONATE TO MAKE SURE NO ONE IN ROCHESTER GOES HUNGRY THIS WINTER

Oct. 16 - Oct 25

Details: Donate financially to Channel One to help stock the food shelves this winter

Contact: Channel One Food Bank, www.helpingfeedpeople.org/donate/donate-paypal/, Put “Spirit Days” in the tribute box

DONATE WINTER COATS AND CLOTHING

Oct. 17 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.; Oct. 19 - Oct. 23 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. and 4 - 7 p.m.; Oct. 24 11 a.m. - 7 p.m.

Details: Drop off winter coat and clothing donations for the Salvation Army to distribute to the Spirit Days warehouse at 214 N Broadway Ave (warehouse space next to Hollandberry Pannekeoken)

Contact: Spirit Day, rochesterspiritdays@gmail.com

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED AT THE SALVATION ARMY

Oct. 16 - Oct. 25

Details: Volunteers needed for service projects on the Salvation Army campus and to help with the distribution of collected coats and clothes

Contact: Salvation Army, Visit RochesterSA.org to sign up or contact Rebecca Snapp, Rebecca.Snapp@usc.SalvationArmy.org, 507-288-3663 ext. 700104

HOST A COAT/CLOTHING COLLECTION BOX

Oct. 16 - Oct. 25

Details: Looking for groups, businesses, or organizations that can host a collection box

Contact: Salvation Army, Rebecca Snapp, Rebecca.Snapp@usc.SalvationArmy.org, 507-288-3663 ext. 700104

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED AT CHANNEL ONE

Oct. 16 - Oct. 25

Details: Volunteers are needed to pack boxes and perform clean room activities at the food bank. 12-20 volunteers for several shifts during the week.

Contact: Channel One Food Bank, David Steenhoek, davidsteenhoek@channel-one.org, 507-424-1705

SEND A LETTER OF ENCOURAGEMENT TO A SENIOR IN OUR COMMUNITY

Oct. 16 - 25 and beyond

Details: You can write a one-time letter of encouragement to a senior or you can write a letter initiating a longer term pen pal relationship. Letters will be distributed by the Elder Network. Please make sure your letter indicates your preference for recipient (male, female, or either) and indicate that you would like to have the recipient reply back

Mail letters to: Elder Network, Attn: Becca Herbstritt, 1130 1/2 7th ST NW Suite 205, Rochester, MN 55901

HELP SENIORS IN OUR COMMUNITY

Oct. 16 - 25 and beyond

Details: Volunteers are needed to help with transportation needs of our seniors. Volunteers with technical skills are especially needed to help offer telephone support to seniors trouble-shooting technology.

Contact: Elder Network, Becca Herbstritt, BeccaH@elder-network.org, 507-251-0867

FAMILY SERVICE ROCHESTER VOLUNTEERS NEEDED

Oct. 16 - Oct. 25

Details: Volunteers are needed to help with fall raking and general yard clean-up. Friendly visiting (in person or over the phone), food distribution on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, Meals on Wheels delivery 7 days a week. grocery shopping and more.

Contact: Family Service Rochester, Jessica Thornton, jthornton@familyservicerochester.org, 507-287-2010

BEREAN COMMUNITY CHURCH WINTER COAT AND CLOTHING DRIVE

Oct. 16 - Oct. 25

Details: Berean Community Church will be collecting coats and winter clothing for Salvation Army.

Contact: Berean Community Church

TRUE LIFE CHURCH JEANS, JACKETS AND MORE

Oct. 16 - Oct. 25

Details: True Life Church will be collecting new or gently used jeans, jackets and more for The Landing as they seek to be a blessing for those in need.

Contact: True Life Church, office@trueliferochester.org

WHOLE AND HAPPY LIVING WELLNESS CLASS

Oct. 16, 3 p.m.; Oct. 19, 6 p.m.

Details: During this time of increased stress and uncertaintly, this workshop is deisgned to help you uncover your internal strengths, values, and vision to help you step out of survival mode and begin to thrive regardless of your circumstances

Register: www.mywholeandhappylife.com

WINTER CLOTHING DRIVE FOR THE LANDING MN AT CHRIST COMMUNITY CHURCH

Oct. 17, 5 - 7 p.m.; Oct. 18, 9 -Noon; Oct. 22, 4 - 6 p.m.

Details: The Landing MN assists those in Rochester that are experiencing homelessness to reach a point of security and stability. You can help as winter approaches by donating stocking caps, waterproof gloves, & warm socks. Come see the Mobile Outreach Unit truck used to aid those experiencing homelessness and learn other ways to help. On Thursday afternoon, we even offer a drive-thru donation drop off if you prefer to stay in your car! For more information, please go to www.thelandingmn.org.

Contact: Christ Community Church, 4400 55th Street in Northwest Rochester, Joel LaCroix, joeljlacroix@gmail.com

FAITHFULLY SPEAKING TOASTMASTERS E-OPEN HOUSE

Oct. 20, 5:30 - 7 p.m.

Details: We would love to have you join our Zoom call to grow in your communication and confidence! Faithfully Speaking Toastmasters mission is to provide a supportive experience to empower your communication and leadership skills. We do this with respectful dialogue, an openness to learning about other faiths, and evaluating based on delivery and organization not content. Visitors can enjoy the speeches or take part in short discussions.

Contact: Faithfully Speaking Toastmasters, faithfullyspeaking.toastmost.org, Joel LaCroix, joeljlacroix@gmail.com

BYU ALUMNI ASSOCIATION ROCHESTER CHAPTER REACH OUT TO SENIORS

Oct. 23

Details: We are asking BYU Alumni and Friends of BYU and their families to create cards and drawings that the BYU Alumni Association Rochester MN Chapter will distribute to senior citizens in the Rochester area. This is a great opportunity for a family home evening activity or a homeschool art activity.

Contact: Please mail cards to Ellen Jepson by 10/23/2020, or text Ellen at 920-202-4149 to arrange for drop-off.

TOGETHER ONLINE: ENTERTAINMENT FOR A CAUSE

Oct. 23, 5 - 7 p.m.

Details: Enjoy a night of entertainment on October 23 in your living room for a good cause! Entertainers including musicians and a comedian will be presenting for you live while we share about different organizations in Rochester that are crucial to our community and opportunities to serve them. We are also partnering with St. James Coffee in Rochester to host an item drive one week following the event for The Landing MN, an organization helping the homeless (details will be shared Oct. 23). We hope you will join us in the comfort of your own home and take advantage of this fun opportunity to support our community.

Contact: Rochester Group team and Thrivent Community Strategy Board members. Please RSVP by October 21, 2020 to rochestergroup@thrivent.com. A link to the event will be emailed to you on October 22.

CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST OF LATTER-DAY SAINTS, ROCHESTER 1ST WARD RAKING UP ROCHESTER

Oct. 24

Details: We will be raking up leaves on Saturday, October 24. If you are in need of help with leaf clean-up, or know of someone who is, please forward information to the event organizer for consideration. We also welcome anyone able to help with raking leaves to join us. Please bring your own rake.

Contact: Anna Bartoo, gabeandannabartoo@hotmail.com

BUILDING FREE PANTRY CABINETS

Oct. 24

Details: The men of Next Chapter and local churches are building several cabinets to be used as Free Pantries outside of Rochester churches and home. The pantries will allow neighbors to share food and hygiene items with their neighbors in need.

Contact: Next Chapter Ministries, Courtney Dugstad, Courtney.Dugstad@NextChapterRochester.org, 507-529-5799

LIVING HOPE CHURCH TRUNK OR TREAT AND CLOTHING DRIVE

Oct. 24, 4:30 - 6:00 p.m.

Details: An event for children to come and trick or treat in a safe setting. Hot dogs and chips with drinks will be provided along with a chance to have children take pictures in a photo booth. Families can bring any gently used or new coats to donate to The Landing event truck.

Contact: Katherine Coleman, odessa5th@gmail.com, 507-254-2851

NEIGHBORHOOD CLEANUP AND RAKE AND RUN

Oct. 25

Details: Our church will be picking up trash along the stretch of road near our church building that we have adopted on 10/17, and will also be doing a rake and run in one of the area neighborhoods in the afternoon of 10/25.

Contact: Marion Road Christian Church, Monte French, seniorminister@marionchurch.com

FALL FAMILY FEST

Oct. 31, 4 - 7 p.m.

Details: This year Rochester assembly is hosting a community-wide event on Oct 31st from 4-7pm. At several locations evenly distributed throughout our city there will be homes that will have a fun activity and free gifts for all who visit them. Each location will have a special “fall” themed display with a family-friendly activity. It is our hope that each one of these locations will represent our love for our community and provide a connection point for neighbors to come together and build relationships with each other and Christ. More information and neighborhood locations can be found at rochesterassebly.com

Contact: Rochester Assembly, rochesterassembly.com