Route 66 car cruise to help feed Yukon’s elderly, homebound

Yukon Mobile Meals will benefit from Sept. 15th ‘Cruise-In for a Cause’

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Yukon Mobile Meals Director Joanne Oltmanns and her volunteers are participating for the first time in Yukon 66 Main Street’s “Cruise-In for a Cause”. The fourth annual benefit car cruise will be 5-9 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 15 in downtown Yukon. (Photo by Conrad Dudderar)

By Conrad Dudderar
Staff Writer

As demand for their food delivery service grows, Yukon Mobile Meals is asking Route 66 car cruise attendees to “give a little” so even more Yukon residents can receive nourishment.

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Mobile Meals will participate for the first time in the annual “Cruise-In for a Cause” set 5-9 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 15 on Main Street Yukon.

This marks the fourth year that Yukon 66 Main Street will host car cruisers “under the lights of Main” on the third Thursday of September.

All types of vehicles are welcome – from classics and hot rods to vintage and late models. A limited number of reserved “park and show” spaces are offered in the 400 block of Main Street.

This is a free, “open” cruise with participants encouraged to contribute to four non-profit causes.

2022 is the first time that Yukon Mobile Meals will be one of the “help” causes to benefit. Director Joanne Oltmanns explained why Mobile Meals hoped to be part of the Sept. 15th event.

“We want to bring awareness to our program and services we offer to the community,” Oltmanns said. “We’re a community service organization that serves a noon meal five days a week to Yukon’s homebound and elderly who are unable to prepare their own meals.”

Car enthusiasts will celebrate America’s Main Street in a fun and unique way – all while helping support Mobile Meals and other local charitable causes.

“The cruise brings a lot of people to town who shop our Main Street businesses,” Oltmanns said. “It’s a fun event for the whole family.”

Besides Yukon Mobile Meals, the 2022 Cruise-In for a Cause will support Savannah Station Therapeutic Riding Center, Youth & Family Services and Canadian County Court-Appointed Special Advocates.

Each organization will have an on-site advocacy booth with information and a collection site for a product drive.

Yukon Mobile Meals’ cruise slogan is “If You Can Give a Little, We Can Give a Lot … Of Smiles, Meals and Compassion.”

“We’re going to have a display of No. 10 cans of vegetables and fruits, and a soup pot to fill with suggested donations to cover the cost of those vegetables and fruits,” Oltmanns said.

At their advocacy booth, Mobile Meals’ volunteers will conduct a bean bag toss bingo game for cruise-goers to play.

This is appropriate since Yukon Mobile Meals hosts a monthly bingo night at the Dale Robertson Center to raise funds for their weekday feeding program.

Mobile Meals’ cruise sponsor is Chris Coleman of All-State Insurance.

Yukon’s Dan Sherry cruises Route 66 in his classic Yukon Fire Department truck during the 2021 “Cruise-In for a Cause” on Main Street. (Photo by Conrad Dudderar)
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A PASSION FOR MOBILE MEALS

Yukon Mobile Meals’ leader has a true passion for her job.

Oltmanns has been part of the program since its inception in 1975. She’s been a volunteer, program manager and director.

“Right now, we’re serving 115 (meal recipients) on most days,” Oltmanns said. “That’s pretty much our max, but we hate turning anyone down, so we keep ‘stretching’.

“We have six routes that cover the city.”

Besides delivering hot and nutritious lunches, Mobile Meals’ volunteers provide regular wellness checks on meal recipients.

“Sometimes, the smiles we take to those people mean just as much as the meal,” Oltmanns shared. “If we go to their home and don’t find them, we take steps to find out if they’ve fallen or are sick and report on to their caregiver.”

Anyone interested in volunteering as a delivery driver or kitchen helper should call (405) 350-5900 or visit Yukon Mobile Meals’ website.

Attendees of Yukon’s upcoming Cruise-In for a Cause will be encouraged to provide monetary gifts to the four help causes at their booths or “donation stations” at the event site.

When they’re not riding, cruise-goers will stroll through the park and show area, watch a constant parade of “cool” rides, visit cause and sponsor booths, and check out fun activities at stops along with way.

The 2022 Cruise-In for a Cause event sponsor is Archery Traditions of Oklahoma.

The Yukon Main Street office, 528 W Main, is open from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. For more information, call (405) 350-5999 or visit yukon66mainstreet.com

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