by Lisa Tome
For as long as they can remember, members of the Perryville Lions Club have been sweet on a certain kind of cherry pie.
That cheesecake-like no bake confection is now a fundraiser for the Lions.
For years, the Lions helped out with the annual Turkey Suppers sponsored by Principio United Methodist Church. The suppers were discontinued and now a popular dessert from the event is helping rake in the dough for the Lions. The pies, brought to the suppers by Lion Bonnie Giraldi and others, were a hit year after year.
And now for the second year, the Lions are assembling the pies and selling them so you can buy them for your sweetie in time for Valentine's Day.
"We wanted something to sell that's easy to make. It's my recipe, a 40-year-old recipe that I got off of cream cheese. I would make it for the dinners but three or four people would also make it," said Giraldi.
So the popular pie is now being mass-produced. And most of the Lions have a role in the production. Tony Gerst measures ingredients. Luther Vaught opens packages of what needs to be measured. Four people, including Oakley Sumpter, Peggy Morrison, Shirley Reichenbach, and Sharon Alexander, man mixers. Colleen Chamberlain is the person who scoops the mixture into the pie shells. Kirk Atkinson opens the pie shells. Ed Stevens, the club's president, is in charge of sealing up the pies, keeping the count, and refrigerating the finished products.
"I have fun making pies," said Gerst.
"We make pies and get money," said Vaught.
"This is easier than the turkey dinners," said Chamberlain.
The group has made up to 200 pies in a day.
"It all works," said Giraldi. "This production crew does not complain and last time we made them, they did not even take a break."
The proceeds from the pie sales go back into community activities.
Some are earmarked for a scholarship to help a Perryville student attend Cecil College.
Sumpter said that the Lions need to fund new fundraisers. They formerly had two a year, at Christmas and Easter, at Perryville Outlet Center. Those fundraisers have been discontinued costing the club as much as $2,500 per year.
To buy a pie, cost is $8 each, see any member of the Perryville Lions Club or call 410-642-6330 to place your order.
Deadline to order is February 7. The pies will be made on February 13. You can arrange for pick-up or delivery with the club.