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Restaurant partnership enhances Senior Nutrition Meals in Lennox


Lori Anfinson, Wooden Nickel kitchen manager, and Stacy Blow, Wooden Nickel owner, prepare meals for Meals on Wheels at the Lennox American Legion.


Active Generations, the organization responsible for providing senior nutrition meals at the Lennox American Legion Hall, has recently formed a partnership that brings a new twist to the dining experience. While previously delivering meals from Sioux Falls, Active Generations has now joined forces with The Wooden Nickel, a restaurant based in Crooks, SD.

This change came about when Cinda Rippentrop, the cook at the Lennox Senior Center, retired and Active Generations were unable to find a certified replacement. As a result, Active Generations began delivering the meals to the Lennox community. However, The Wooden Nickel, which had been successfully providing meals through Active Generations in Hartford and Crooks, approached them with a proposal to extend their services to Lennox as well.

Rebecca Behnke, Nutrition Director at Active Generations, expressed her enthusiasm about the partnership, stating, “We were happy to say yes.”

Behnke noted that Active Generations oversees the meals provided and approves all menus before they are served, to ensure that the proper nutrition is being met and that they are following the guidelines.

The Wooden Nickel, a well-established restaurant owned by Darin and Stacy Blow since 2019, boasts a diverse menu featuring chislic, pizza, and daily lunch specials. The restaurant has been in operation for over 15 years and has been collaborating with the Active Generations program for three years, this marks the first year with the Lennox community.

Stacy Blow, co-owner of The Wooden Nickel, highlighted the adherence to nutritional guidelines, explaining that each meal includes 1/2 cup of vegetables and 1/2 cup of fruit, as mandated by the state. The restaurant takes pride in preparing their daily menu from scratch in their Crooks kitchen, with kitchen manager Lori Anfinson ensuring the food’s quality.

Receiving accolades for their delicious meals, The Wooden Nickel aims to attract more seniors to participate in the program in Lennox.

“As the program grows we want the community to know that not only can people come to the Legion Hall but also can get meals delivered if they need,” Blow stated. “The more we serve the better it is for your community. It is such a wonderful service for those who need it, and a peace of mind for children whose parents are at home.”

To partake in the Senior Nutrition Meals, individuals must be 60 years of age or older. The cost of each meal is $5, but financial assistance programs are available for those in need. To arrange meal deliveries, interested parties can call Helen Groen at 409-8788 by 9:30 a.m. on the desired day. The Lennox Independent publishes a menu each week, courtesy of H&R Block.

The Senior Nutrition Meals are served Monday through Friday, providing a vital resource for Lennox’s elderly population.

The partnership between Active Generations and The Wooden Nickel promises to enhance the dining experience and foster community well-being for seniors in Lennox.

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