West Michigan closings and cancellations

Restaurant holding annual ‘Clean Out Your Freezer’ food drive

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KALAMAZOO, Mich. -- Kalamazoo restaurant owners are giving hunters a chance to clear out their freezers ahead of hunting season.

The annual 'Clean Out Your Freezer Food Drive' organized by Barrett's Smokehouse is meant to benefit both hunters and families in need.  Owners Lori and Tim Barrett say they're excited to do the event, and collect hundreds of pounds of frozen meat each year.

This year, they're hoping to go into the thousands.

The drive usually feeds between 500 and 700 local families with more than 900 pounds of meat.

In past years, the Barretts themselves have donated everything from 10 pounds of meat to a whole deer.  Lori says they take the meat, grind it into burger and donate it to the Loaves and Fishes charity.

While the drive usually takes meat from hunters, this year they're opening it up to anyone who wants to donate so they can help more families.   They're also accepting canned foods and cash donations.

"The goal: the more the better," said Lori Barrett.  "You know, it really helps the communities and Loaves and Fishes has a wonderful program. So we're very honored to help."

To donate you can stop by the Barrett's Smokehouse locations at 9942 Oakland Dr. in Portage or at 4536 Stadium Dr. in Kalamazoo.

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