The Champaign County Shrine Club’s long-time aluminum can drive, which helps burned and crippled children receive medical attention at Shriners Hospitals for Children locations throughout the country, has a new main collection site south of Urbana.
Started in 1989 by five local Shriners – Jack Tullis, Bud Perry, Johnny Packer, Marvin Stevens and Milan Carnes – the club’s aluminum can drive called Johnny’s Body Shop, 418 Laurel Oak St., home over two decades. That all changed on Saturday, Nov. 12, when club members, escorted by the Champaign County Sheriff’s Office, moved its operations to a new home at the county’s recycling collection site behind Vancrest of Urbana, 2380 S. U.S. Route 68.
Local Shriner John Steinberger said the move was made out of necessity following the passing in June of Barbara Packer, who owned the Laurel Oak Street property.
The Champaign County Commission offered to share space at the county’s recycling center.
“We are very appreciative of the support of the Packer family throughout the years, as well of the support of the Champaign County commissioners,” Steinberger said.
Since collecting roughly $20 on its initial aluminum can haul in 1989, local Shriners, with help from area businesses and residents, have collected to date $876,648 worth of aluminum.
Along with the main collection site, the Shriners have numerous smaller aluminum can drop-off sites in Urbana. They are located at the Urbana Fire Division, the former armory on North Main Street, behind the masonic temple on North Main Street, and at Scioto Square near the Tractor Supply Company.
Additional drop-sites are available throughout the county and surrounding areas at the the following locations: The old fire department buildings in Tremont City and Fletcher, the Johnson-St. Paris Fire District, the West Liberty and Rosewood fire departments, the Concord United Methodist Church on North state Route 560, Loretta’s Country Kitchen in Christiansburg, the Poor Farmer’s Campground in Fletcher, the Terre Haute Mall, and the old Tullis trucking location at 11 Sceva Ave. in Mechanicsburg.
Individuals or businesses unable to drop off their cans at one of the above locations can have the cans picked up by calling club members Jim Poling (937-653-6293), Dennis Hinkle (937-663-5069) or Steinberger (937-653-5067).
Joshua Keeran may be reached at 937-652-1331 (ext. 1774) or on Twitter @UDCKeeran.