CEDAR RAPIDS – Canned tuna might be the appropriate item to bring when visiting Monica Morley’s koi pond next Sunday in northeast Cedar Rapids.
Peanut butter, soup or canned fruit would work, as well.
Morley, an avid koi enthusiast, wanted to showcase her sensational pond and gardens for free, while supporting a good cause.
She teamed with Amanda Pieper, director of the HACAP Food Reservoir in Hiawatha, to create Koi for a Cause, a benefit for the food reservoir.
The event will be 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 4, at Morley’s gardens at 6702 Spring Cove Ct. NE. Visitors can drop off a non-perishable food item or make a monetary donation to Eastern Iowa’s food drive to be Free From Hunger.
“Hunger is a hidden problem in our area,” Pieper said, noting that on a weekly basis, 1 in 4 children and 1 in 5 adults don’t know where their next meal is coming from.
Summer is an especially high-need time, she said, as children don’t have access to school lunches and snacks that they do during the school year.
Morley and her mother, Elena Murillo, tend their spacious, life-filled backyard that includes a koi pond and numerous themed gardens. Their gardens have been on previous tours, but Morley said she read about the need at local food banks and wanted to do something to help.
Visitors who bring a donation are invited to enjoy the landscape and learn what it takes to care for the ornamental fish. Handmade, fine-stitched quilts also will be on display.
Items needed most at the HACAP Food Reservoir include canned fruit or vegetables, soup, peanut butter and canned tuna or chicken.
“An event such as this allows people to help out those in need, right here in our community, while getting to see a priceless form of landscape art,” Pieper said. “We encourage people to come, enjoy the scenery and help our community.”
To learn more about hosting a food drive, contact Amanda Pieper at firstname.lastname@example.org or 319-739-0020.