Cherry Valley Fry Crew Helps Bassett Cancer Patients
| The Fry Crew's cooking trailer
This summer, patients at Bassett's cancer center got a wonderful surprise from the Cherry Valley Fry Crew, a group of philanthropic individuals who get together and cook good food for local causes. This group worked at the Cherry Valley Outdoor Games for three days in their fry trailer and donated all of their proceeds to the Recreational Relief Fund, which helps stage-four cancer patients and their families throughout Bassett Healthcare Network do something fun to take their minds off their disease.
The crew includes a great variety of people, older and younger, including a former mayor, employees from Bassett and the Baseball Hall of Fame, college students, and retired people. None of them want to be identified. They just want to help their neighbors. They have been doing it for years now.
One crew member said, "We've done spaghetti dinners outside when it was 10 degrees, cooked in thunder snow, and made food in pouring rain when there was in inch of standing water in the parking lot. It's always an adventure."
By now they have developed a reputation. Sometimes 50 people will stand in line for more than three hours to purchase their food.
It all started with two couples, one of whom wanted to try running a concession stand. They worked a charity event and donated their proceeds to the community center in town. Then people began approaching them for help.
Now more than 30 people are part of the Cherry Valley Fry Crew. Each of them donates their labor and all of their proceeds (less the cost of the food and fuel, some of which is also donated) to the cause they have chosen to support. They chop and prep and cook and hand out orders and help to keep people in line.
One secret to their success is their spirit: they always have fun while they're working. "It's good for us because we have a great time," said one crew member.
It's certainly good for the community, too. If you are inspired by the Cherry Valley Fry Crew and their efforts, you can send a gift to the Friends of Bassett, at 1 Atwell Road, Cooperstown, NY 13326, or make a donation online.