NUTLEY, NJ - Nutley Boy Scouts shattered all previous donation records by collecting more than 27,600 food items at the annual 'Scouting for Food' drive to benefit the pantry operation of Nutley Family Service Bureau. The previous record of 22,465 items in 2017 was crushed during the March 24 event. 

The all-day event started a week earlier, during St. Patrick's Day weekend, when boy scouts delivered handled paper grocery bags to homes throughout the township. The bags were donated by Trader Joe's and included instructions about what to donate, what not to donate, and where to leave the full bags for pick up. On Saturday the 24th, the collections began.

“This was an exhausting day, but a great way to teach the Scouts, especially the young Cub Scouts the meaning of helping others”, stated Walt Smith, Pack 141 Chairman and chairman of the project.  “After toping 13,000 food items in 2013, I thought we reached our maximum potential, with last year’s incredible total of 22,465 but this year was amazing.... “We were able to reach this remarkable total because we now have more Scouts in Nutley than in previous years and a major effort was made to coordinate coverage of nearly every street in town”, continued Smith. 

Nutley Family Service Bureau director Eileen Painter thanked everyone involved in making the event a success. Referring to the volunteers as the "Boy Scout Food Drive Village," Painter said "With your help, over 120 volunteers gathered together to bring in a record number of non-perishable food items at this year's Boy Scout, 'Scouting for Food' Drive. Every item will support the Nutley Family Service Bureau Food Pantry and the close to 150 households we support. We are thrilled to partner with the Nutley Scouts to fill the pantry."

“I want to congratulate each of the Boy Scout Troops and Cub Scout Packs for their leadership in organizing their respective group to make the project a tremendous success and to the many Nutley Family Service Bureau volunteers for their valuable help at the Pantry”, stated Smith.  The organizing committee, in addition to Smith, included Co-chair Monica Suarez, Cheryl Jiosi and Chris Treglio leaders of  Pack 142 Joanne Gola Troop 147, Joann Kielblock Pack 141 and Eileen Painter, Executive Director of the Nutley Family Service Bureau.

Although not a competition, tallies were kept of the food collected by the scouts. Boy Scout troop 147 was led by Jake Shoemaker with 544 followed by Edward Greg at 491, Scott Bolton at 457 and the O’Halloran brothers at 499.

The Cub Scouts were led by Teddy Treglio of Pack 142 with a remarkable 981 followed by Alex Rodriguez, Foster Smith both with more than 500. The Ballou brothers collected over 700 as did Joe and Nicholas DelTufo. Pack 141 was let by David Crecco with 433, Matt and Andrew Richards with 871, Simon and John Tevletidis brothers with  438, the Quinn brothers with 410 and Daniel Kielblock 416 and Osman Sarigedik with 381.   One Nutley Boy Scout, Gabriel Camacho now with Troop 36 collected 1,800 for the third year in a row”, continued Smith.  “The efforts of individual Scouts has reached a whole new level Smith added “We are proud of every single Scout for their effort in helping our residents in need.” 

Scouts were also outside Nutley Park ShopRite to accept donations from residents.  Over 1,200 items were donated there.

All items were taken to Ciccolini building on Franklin Avenue where a team of volunteers checked expiry dates and sorted food by type. Use of the building was made possible by Nutley Commissioner Mauro Tucci.   

Every time a Cub Scouts recites the Cub Scout pledge he promises to help others and in the Boy Scout Promise, a boy scout promises to help other people at all times. By participating in a Scouting for Food program, scouts get a step closer to fulfilling those words.

Nutley Boy Scout's 'Scouting for Food' 2019 is tentatively scheduled for March 30, 2019. 

Related Story: Nutley's Scouting for Food Proves that It Takes a Village to Feed a Community

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