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Iowa City Food Pantries & Free Meals list

by Angela Pilkington on January 29th, 2019

The extreme cold and school cancellations can add strain to our local families. Here is list of food resources in Iowa City and Iowa City Food Pantries & Free Meals:

Johnson County Crisis Center Food Bank
1121 S Gilbert Ct.
Iowa City, IA 52240
Monday, Wednesday, Friday: 12-4:30pm
Tuesday: 12-7:00pm
Thursday: 9:30am-4:30pm
Phone: (319) 351-0128

Iowa City Catholic Worker
1414 Sycamore Street
Little Free Food Pantry is available
Meal is served:
Saturday 4-7pm
Sunday 12-4pm

ICCompassion Food Pantry
1035 Wade St.
Iowa City, IA 52240
Wednesday: 12-4pm (Free community meal from 5-6pm)
Thursday: 5:30-7pm
Phone: (319) 330-9883

The River Community Church Food Pantry
Must be a resident of Iowa City
3001 Muscatine Ave.
Iowa City, IA 52240
Wednesday: 12-5pm
Phone: (319) 354-3118

Salvation Army
1116 S Gilbert Ct.
Iowa City, IA 52240
Food items to take-
Monday-Friday: 1-2pm
Soup kitchen-
Monday-Friday: Meal served at 5pm
Sunday: Grab and go bag lunch at 9:30am
Phone: (319) 337-3725

Free Lunch Program
1105 S Gilbert Ct. Suite 100
Iowa City, IA 52240
Monday-Saturday: 11:30am-1pm
Phone: (319) 337-6283

Agape Café (Old Brick Church)
Free made-to-order breakfast served during the school year (August-May)
26 E Market St.
Iowa City, IA 52245
Wednesdays: 7-8:30am
Phone: (319) 351-2626

Stay warm, Iowa City!

Reading the Night Away With the Jólabókaflóð

by Amanda on December 15th, 2017

What the heck is Jólabókaflóð? Literally, it means “Christmas Book Flood,” and it’s pronounced “Yo-la-bok-a-flot.” Maybe you’ve heard of it, since all things Nordic are very trendy right now (hygge, Nordic noir, Scandinavian minimalism, et cetera). It’s the Icelandic tradition of exchanging books on Christmas Eve, then spending the night reading those books. In Iceland, the holiday season kicks off in November with the delivery of the Bókatíðindi—the annual Book Bulletin, distributed by the Icelandic Publishers Association for free to each Icelandic home.

This tradition began during World War II after Iceland gained its independence from Denmark. Paper was one of the few commodities not rationed during the war, so books became the gift of choice, as other types of gifts were scarce. Iceland loves its books: 93% of Icelanders read at least one book a year (compared to 73% of Americans), and it is the third most literate country in the world (Finland and Norway are the first and second). In Iceland, one in ten people will publish a book in their lifetime, and in 2011 Reykjavík was designated a UNESCO City of Literature, three years after Iowa City received the same distinction.

Jólabókaflóð is easy to adapt to your family’s needs. While the original tradition is tied to Christmas, yours doesn’t need to be! Simply gather your family together, and enjoy each other’s company while exchanging your favorite books. Check out used bookstores, thrift stores, and library sales to get the best deals on your Book Flood gifts, or use library books for a totally free exchange (just be careful about overdue books). This article has some really fun ideas for creating your own Book Flood tradition.

This sweet tradition is very close to my heart. I grew up in a family of readers—which is probably not surprising, now that I’m working in a library and getting my Master’s in Library Science. For a lot of other families, Christmas day is a loud, boisterous occasion. For my family, it was all about the books. On Christmas Eve, we would gather around the tree and read classic picture books together; the next day was usually spent in pajamas, scattered around the house, reading all the new books we’d received as gifts. To me, there’s almost nothing better than being with people you love, reading.

What books will you give to your loved ones this holiday season?