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Young Professionals help feed families in need
new slt YP food project
Great Bend Chamber of Commerce Office Manager Lacey Oetken boxes up the dozens of food items donated by members of the Barton County Young Professionals during their annual Christmas party earlier this month. - photo by COURTESY PHOTO


Their sweaters were ugly enough to be funny, but the job at hand was serious when members of the Barton County Young Professionals group met on Dec. 13. This price of admission to their second annual Ugly Sweater Christmas Party was a donation to the Barton County Food Bank, YP chair Kristy Straub said.

"We like to kick back and have a good time once in a while," Straub said. "But our group is also committed to giving back to our community, in big and small ways."

The group of community-minded young professionals pulled out all the stops, Straub said. "Most people who came didn’t just bring one item, as required. Almost everyone walked in with a sack full of food. It was great to see people doing something for others, especially during the holidays."

Since the first ever membership mixer in late November, the group was gained over 130 new members. Anyone between the age of 21 and 40 years old who works in Barton County is welcome to join. The group’s next function will be the first of a six-part leadership development luncheon series that starts at noon Tuesday, Jan. 10, in the Great Bend Chamber of Commerce board room. For more information or to join, e-mail