Colorado State University’s Annual Cans Around the Oval Celebrates Food Drive Success

Cans Around the Oval, the largest food drive in Northern Colorado, is an 18-year tradition at Colorado State. Last year, more than 108,000 pounds of food were collected for the more than 40,000 people who depend upon the Food Bank for Larimer County to alleviate hunger.

The five-week food drive began on Sept. 9 and concludes with Cans around the Oval, when all donated food will be weighed. Cans Around the Oval closes the event with lining the university’s historic oval with all of the collected canned food, a tradition that visually demonstrates the community’s generosity.

The first can will be placed on the Oval at 10 a.m. Friday, Oct. 14 by Colorado State President Larry Edward Penley along with the chair of the event, Pat Brady, president of FirstBank. The food collected at various locations and by volunteer groups will be brought to the site by volunteers throughout the day. The weight of food gathered by each group’s food drive efforts will be calculated and tallied on the Oval; various student and community groups compete for the most food.

"Each year, the Fort Collins community makes a tremendous display of generosity and caring through Cans Around the Oval," said Barb Kistler, director of the Student Leadership and Civic Engagement office. "Over the last several months, stories of loss and desperation across the nation and world after significant natural disasters are a reminder to many people that basic necessities such as enough food to eat can be a luxury to others, and, indeed, that the kindness and generosity of others has a powerful impact on those in need."

Cans Around the Oval is sponsored by the Office of Student Leadership and Civic Engagement. SLCE provides leadership development, service-learning and volunteer opportunities, and works collaboratively with students, staff, faculty and the community to offer a broad range of service and leadership opportunities for student involvement. Through the programs at SLCE, students find support and resources to graduate as engaged, active participants in their local, national and global communities.

To learn more about SLCE, visit the Web at