Interfaith Sanctuary’s 15th annual Xtreme Holiday Extravaganza, the largest fundraiser we hold each year, was hosted virtually during the COVID-19 pandemic. Dr. Steve Baker, a partner at Habitat Veterinary Hospital, allowed Interfaith to auction off a barn concert featuring the band Deviant Kin at his North End home. This month, our donors finally got to enjoy the in-person concert.
Baker is a veterinarian during the day, but is also a musician, former smokejumper, and handyman who reconstructed an antique barn on his property. The wood barn dates from the 1800s and was built by German craftsmen in Nuremberg, Pennsylvania, where it was disassembled and freighted to Wilder, Idaho. Dr. Baker said he found the barn on Craigslist while searching for barn wood and rebuilt the pile of beams on his property with the help of friends.
Inside the barn, Dan Ansotegui, the owner of Ansot’s, served charcuterie and chatted with attendees as they gathered before the show. Then, the group watched the band play as the sun set over Boise. It was a spectacular event made possible only with the help of our fantastic friends and neighbors. As is the case with all the work we do at Interfaith, it wouldn’t be possible without the grace of a community that chooses to get involved.
“In a strange way, the pandemic gave us the ability to expand and be better at what we do,” Interfaith Sanctuary’s Executive Director Jodi Peterson-Stigers told the crowd. “Churches shut down, day shelters shut down, and no one was making meals, so it fell on us.”
One of the concert guests was Dave Martin, a local businessman and member of True Hope Church, who approved Interfaith’s proposal on behalf of the church to obtain the food trailer from which we serve nightly meals in place of a kitchen. The trailer has allowed staff to drastically increase the number of meals we serve, raising our capacity to feed anyone who needs it from 1,500 to 6,000 meals each month.
We hope to move that program into a large commercial kitchen in our new building while keeping the trailer in use out in the community, to help our guests gain recognition for their hard work.
So many helping hands in Boise and beyond assist us in finding the resources we need to make sure people currently unhoused in our city can build a future where they thrive. This event was a fun reminder that we’re all in this together. Here are some photos of the beautiful space!