The United Way of Crookston has announced the annual Soup & Chili Cook-off & Chocolate Extravaganza held each fall has been canceled. The event is expected to return in 2021.

The United Way has also had to cancel its annual dinner and golf scramble during the COVID-19 pandemic.  Board Member Nell DeBoer said that the plan is all events will return. “We are very sad that we had to cancel it,” said DeBoer. “But, with the COVID pandemic and resulting social distancing guidelines, we felt it was responsible for us to do that. As we are planning next year’s events, we are planning on everything being back to normal. It may or may not, and we will adjust the sails as we go. We are looking forward to doing it again next year. It’s not a huge moneymaker for us as far as a fundraiser, but it is a wonderful community event and our official kickoff to the campaign season.”

The current uncertainty perpetuating into all corners of life will make the annual campaign challenging. “It’s going to be tough,” said DeBoer. “We are looking at some creative ways of fundraising this year since a lot of our stuff is face-to-face. We had to cancel the golf scramble, and there are a lot more needs out there, so the need for the United Way is bigger than ever.”

A golf ball drop will be one of the virtual giving options the United Way offers. “We are going to look for some virtual ways to give,” said DeBoer. “We’ll have more on that soon. We’re going to do a virtual golf ball drop over Facebook. There are a lot of ways we’re going to get creative. But we really ask Crookston to jump in and help support the over 20 agencies we support. We’re looking for people to dig in and give what they can because those agencies are really in need this year.”