Free summer meals for kids in eastern Iowa - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Free summer meals for kids in eastern Iowa

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CEDAR RAPIDS (KWWL) - School's out for summer. For kids, that means fun and games. But for parents like Nova Richardson, summer can be stressful.

"I have three boys at home, so it's kind of a lot to feed that many boys," said Richardson, who lives in Cedar Rapids. "It's nice to be able to take them to the park and have a meal already there for them, and it's a lot easier for me as a mom, too."

Richardson takes her kids to one of the summer meals sites. Groups like Horizons partner with local, state, and federal groups to offer free meals to kids from ages 1 to 18.

This year the Linn County program is expanding, offering more sites than in the past. A lot of the sites are located near parks or pools because organizers want to take the food to where the kids are.

"Some of the sites are set up to do activities with kids, and we're set up near parks and pools and splash pads so that there's something for the kids to do besides just come for a meal," said Dianna Young, Meals on Wheels Director.

At the kickoff there were plenty of games, balloons, and high fives from McGruff the Crime Dog. 

Kids even got to meet former NFL player Aaron Kampman, an eastern Iowa native.

"A kid might not be getting a nutritious meal at home, so to be able to provide that is a wonderful benefit to help make sure they continue to grow," said Kampman.

For families like the Richardsons, it really makes a difference.

"It's great knowing that they're actually getting something good for them to eat," said Richardson.

For Waterloo locations, click here:

Here's a list of the Linn County locations:


  • Bever Park, 2700 Bever Ave. SE, 11-11:45 a.m.
  • Cedar Terrace Mobile Home Park, 3635 12th Ave. SW, 11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m.
  • Daniels Park (Splash Pad Pavilion), Oakland Road and H Avenue NE, 11-11:45 a.m.
  • Ellis Park (Pool Pavilion), 2000 Ellis Blvd. NW, 12:15-1 p.m.
  • Five Seasons Mobile Home Court, 3421 Blairs Ferry Rd. NE, 12-12:45 p.m.
  • Jacolyn Park, Gordon Avenue and Jacolyn Drive NW, 11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m.
  • Jones Park (Lagoon Pavilion), Wilson Avenue and Fruitland Boulevard SW, 12:15-1 p.m.
  • Kenwood Elementary, 3700 E Ave. NE, 11:15 a.m.-12 p.m.
  • Ladd Library, 3750 Williams Blvd. SW, 11:45 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
  • Oak Hill Jackson Neighborhood Resource Center, 1224 Fifth St. SE, 12-1 p.m.
  • Paul Engle Center, 1600 Fourth Ave. SE, 12:15-1 p.m.
  • The Sanctuary (Formerly Lincoln School), 912 18th Ave. SW, 12-12:45 p.m.
  • Westdale Court Apartments, 2155 Westdale Dr. SW, 11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m.

  • Nixon Elementary, 200 Nixon Dr., 11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m.

  • Marion Public Library, 1095 Sixth Ave., 11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m.

  • Colonial Estates Court, Iowa Highway 1 and Ink Road, 12-1 p.m.

  • Springville Community Center, 304 Broadway St., 11-11:45 a.m.

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