The history:

Cloverdale has a long history of pitching in to help our neighbors. In the early 1970’s, the Cloverdale Business Association (CBA) – which became Cloverdale Area Chamber of Commerce – organized an event to help families in our community during the holidays. Some events included “Spirit of Cloverdale Fest” including fireworks, vendors and entertainment. This event was held where our football and baseball fields are now. 

It was moved to I-70 near where KFC and later Penguin Point were located. One particular event, a benefit show called “Holly Follies”, was held at the former Holiday Inn location, just North of McDonald’s. It was a dinner and a show with performers from our community. 

Eventually, the Cloverdale Area Chamber of Commerce folded, leaving the event without any leadership from the local community. Dance Workshop, a business that was very involved in the events going all the way back to the 1970’s, took the event over to continue the tradition of the benefit show, and helping the children in the community. Today, it is called “Just Dessert”, a variety show where we serve drinks and deserts during the show. In addition to the show and the desserts, there is now a craft show as well, and all of the funds raised go to support Clothe A Child. 


How it works:

Parents in need may ask for a form from Cloverdale Elementary or Middle School. Fill it out and return it to the school. It includes detailed information such as clothing and shoe sizes, and other needs. 

Forms are given to Volunteer Shoppers who make sure each child gets a coat, shoes, pajamas, undergarments, other clothing needs, and a special request like a toy or book. 

The Volunteer Shoppers return items to the school, and everything is distributed from the Cloverdale Elementary School Gymnasium, on the date provided on the form. We have also extended the program to include food goods for those who need food, called Feed A Friend.


How you can help:

We budget $100 per child that we help. There a many ways in which you can contribute: 

  1. First, any monetary donation, neater how small, is helpful.
  2. Second, being a sponsor, ranging from $50 to $500 helps us serve more children, and promotes your company on our Recognition Wall sign, which will be posted on Main Street in Cloverdale, near the Jeff Rich Auction Services building. 
  3. Third, you can participate in the Silent Auction we have at the event. 
  4. You can also be a vendor at our craft show, which is a $25 fee. 
  5. Finally – attend “Just Dessert” by purchasing a table for your business or family. An 8-person table is $100, and we have 6-person tables available for $75. 
  6. General seating is first come, first served with a minimum donation at the door of $10 per person 12 and over, $5 per child 3-11. Children 2 and under may attend for free. 


The Outcomes:

In 2019, we provided for 310 children in our local community. In 2020, due to the Covid 19 pandemic, we were unable to do the craft show, and could only do the benefit show virtually, and were only able to help 85 children. This was heart-breaking as we knew there was more need and not enough funding to help everyone we could. In 2021, we have done smaller events to help supplement, such as Gray’s Dessert Sales, yard sales, cookouts, and more. Our goal is to bring the event closer to the numbers we saw in 2019, so we can help at least 300 children in 2021 – but it can only happen with your participation and support. 


The 2021 Clothe A Child and Feed A Friend Community Benefit

This year, we’ll have a range of new activities going on all day, tied in to the annual Cloverdale Christmas parade. Follow the Grinch and Cindy Lou Hoo to the craft show to get photos, and enjoy the Pets and Humans Pet Parade sponsored by Cuddles Kennels. Along with Just Desserts and the Craft Show, there will be a Baby Pageant, a Kiddos Cookie Contest, and the Covered Bridge Harmony Choir will be performing. Please donate – and please join us in this celebration of our neighbors in need, our community and the holiday season. 


Cloverdale Community Clothe A Child and Feed A Friend 2021 Schedule:

Saturday December 4th, 2021

8:30am – Baby Contest Registration – Auxiliary Gym

9:00am – Craft Show opens – Auxiliary Gym

9:00am – Baby Pageant – Auxiliary Gym

10:00am – Kiddos Cookie Contest – Auxiliary Gym

11:30am – Covered Bridge Harmony Choir – Auxiliary Gym

1:00pm – Parade – Main Street

1:30pm – Photos with the Grinch – Auxiliary Gym

2:00pm – Pet Costume Parade – Auxiliary Gym

3:00pm – Doors open for Just Desserts – Cafetorium

4:00pm – Just Desserts – Cafetorium


For more information contact: 

Lita Sandy – 765-720-9155


Story submitted by Lita Sandy, November 18, 2021 via Citizen One