Washington State Reps. Mike Chapman, left, and Steve Tharinger, center, of the 24th legislative district serve lunch for the kids at the Boys & Girls Club in Sequim on Aug. 27. The club serves a free lunch to attendees and to families at several community locations every day during the summer. Sequim Gazette photos by Conor Dowley

Washington State Reps. Mike Chapman, left, and Steve Tharinger, center, of the 24th legislative district serve lunch for the kids at the Boys & Girls Club in Sequim on Aug. 27. The club serves a free lunch to attendees and to families at several community locations every day during the summer. Sequim Gazette photos by Conor Dowley

State reps serve lunch, make connections at Boys Girls Club

Both 24th district state representatives showed up to serve lunch & talk to kids

Washington State Representatives Steve Tharinger and Mike Chapman took a break out of their schedules on Tuesday, Aug. 26, to see some of their younger constituents of the 24th Legislative District: children at the Boys & Girls Club in Sequim.

Tharinger and Chapman both came to the Carroll C. Kendall Unit of the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Olympic Peninsula to help serve more than 120 lunches and talk with club members over hot dogs and chocolate milk, while learning a little bit more about the summer food program the club runs each year.

“This is really a great program,” Chapman said of the program that serves more than 100 free meals each day at several sites across the Sequim community.

“This helps a lot of kids and families that need it,” he said. “No kids should ever go hungry, and this helps to improve a lot of kids’ summers.”

Chapman, who formerly served as the president of the BGCOP board of directors, and Tharinger were both contacted on Aug. 25 by club executive director Mary Budke, and she said they both gladly made the time to show up.

“I really appreciate them taking the effort to be here and spend time with these kids,” Budke said.

Both Tharinger and Chapman spent about half an hour with the club youth, talking about their jobs and about the kids’ summers and getting ready to head back to school.

“These are some very impressive kids,” Tharinger said. “I talked to a couple of them who could do my job some day.”

The representatives got a chance to talk to all the kids in a brief assembly after lunch, where Chapman made sure to praise the staff of the club and Tharinger thanked the children for being so kind and welcoming to them.

“It really impresses me how this staff knows every child in here — not just their names, but enough to have a meaningful relationship with them,” Tharinger said afterward. “That’s so impactful, and so great for these kids.”

Tharinger, second from right, and Chapman, fifth from right, sit with unit director Dave Miller and numerous club kids. Tharinger and Chapman sat and talked with club kids for about half an hour before speaking in a brief assembly.

Tharinger, second from right, and Chapman, fifth from right, sit with unit director Dave Miller and numerous club kids. Tharinger and Chapman sat and talked with club kids for about half an hour before speaking in a brief assembly.

Chapman and Tharinger serve lunches while the club’s kitchen coordinator Bree Daniels, left, waits to hand them more plates of food to pass out. The representatives handed out more than 120 meals.

Chapman and Tharinger serve lunches while the club’s kitchen coordinator Bree Daniels, left, waits to hand them more plates of food to pass out. The representatives handed out more than 120 meals.

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