Pies support senior meal program in St. Clair Shores

By: Kristyne E. Demske | St. Clair Shores Sentinel | Published September 13, 2019

 Judy Molitor helps prepare apple pies in 2017. This year, pies will be on sale at the Senior Activity Center starting Sept. 17.

Judy Molitor helps prepare apple pies in 2017. This year, pies will be on sale at the Senior Activity Center starting Sept. 17.

File photo by Kristyne E. Demske

 Senior center volunteer Bill Maiuri takes baked apple pies out of the kitchen to cool in 2017. Mums and raffle tickets will also be on sale the week of Sept. 17-20, or while supplies last.

Senior center volunteer Bill Maiuri takes baked apple pies out of the kitchen to cool in 2017. Mums and raffle tickets will also be on sale the week of Sept. 17-20, or while supplies last.

File photo by Kristyne E. Demske

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ST. CLAIR SHORES — No one knows exactly when it began, but it’s been a tradition now for as long as anyone can remember — Apple Pie Week at the St. Clair Shores Senior Activity Center.

“We’ve tried to ask some of our older members,” said Carly Podzikowski, the center coordinator. “(It’s been) at least 20 years at this point, but nobody can remember how far back it goes.”

The annual event returns this month to the St. Clair Shores Senior Activity Center, 20000 Stephens St., with pies set to go on sale Sept. 17. Sales will continue through Sept. 20, or until the 1,000 $10 homemade apple pies are gone.

“We’ll start peeling on Sunday, (Sept.) 15, at 10 a.m.,” Podzikowski said last week. “Usually, early in the week, we’ll have anywhere from 80 to 100 volunteers who come in.”

Then, after taking a day to get “the recipe right,” sales will begin as the pies come out of the oven and are cooled.

“We’re just really looking forward to a great year and, being that it’s all profit at this point, just providing the best service that we can to the meal program,” she said. “As quickly as we can get them out of the oven and cooled for people to eat, they’ll be available. It’s first come, first served.”

Sales of the pies benefit the meal service program at the center. Meals are served five days per week throughout the year there.

Podzikowski said that Bryan Owens, of the Hearing Loss Treatment Center, 25915 Harper Ave., is sponsoring the entire cost of producing the pies, from apples to boxes, and “even the stickers that we put on the boxes are covered.”

“It’s been huge,” she said.

That means that the entire profit will support the meal program.

“The Hearing Loss Treatment Center, Bryan Owens over there, he is just extremely generous,” said Parks and Recreation Director Henry Bowman. “He is going to be sponsoring a lot of different things — SMART transportation to the farmers market, he’s sponsoring some farmers market bags, Apple Pie Week.

“What we’re trying to do is be able to provide as many different activities and events to people in the community, and the way we do that is bringing in businesses and letting them meet the residents that are involved.”

Owens said that he felt helping out was the right thing to do.

“I think that if we all gave back a little bit more to our communities, we would have a vested interest to make sure where we live is the best place to live,” he said.

Bowman said he’s excited for his first Apple Pie Week as parks and recreation director.

“I’m really interested to see what they’ve got going,” he said. “You get so much passion in this community — it’s great.”

The Senior Center of the Shores Board will be selling locally grown mums for $10 each to support their work at the center at the same time. Mums will be available beginning Sept. 13.

Pat Binge, president of the SCOTS Board, said that the money goes to support items that enhance the center.

“Something that we see the center needs that the city won’t provide,” she said.

Recently, the SCOTS Board paid to have a $20,000 patio installed outside next to the bocce courts, something that Binge said is the group’s biggest project.

“With the mums, we’re calling it the Razzle Dazzle Basket Raffle,” she said. “We have over 40 baskets; everything was donated from merchants in St. Clair Shores. We have, combined, over $5,000 in merchandise.”

Each basket, she said, is worth at least $100. Tickets will be on sale during the mum and apple pie sales and cost $1 for one, $5 for seven, $10 for 17 or $20 for 40, with the drawing to be held Sept. 20.

“All the merchants in St. Clair Shores were extremely generous. We got some great prizes,” Binge said.

For more information, call the Senior Activity Center at (586) 445-0996.

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