Highway safety breaks help non-profits, travelers

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DORRANCE TOWNSHIP, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — Friday marks the start of one of the busiest travel weekends of the year. People are getting out of Dodge traveling to their Memorial Day getaway.

Many people stop at rest areas to stretch their legs and maybe use the restroom. What you might also find is food. Motorists are on-the-go for Memorial Day weekend.

“There’s been pockets where it’s been below the speed limit. Most of the time it’s heavy going the speed limit. But, some places we had to slow down. But it’s fine,” John Tefft of Atlanta said.

Tefft and his wife stopped at the Greenfield rest area along I-81 in Lackawanna County to eat a hot dog prepared by the Abington Lions Club.

“This is really nice! It was a surprise. You know we were just going to stop and use the restroom. So this was really nice benefit,” Tefft said.

A benefit on one of the busiest days to travel in the year. The club is offering coffee, juice, hot dogs, baked goods and more at no cost. Just any donation.

“It helps us because we give away scholarships every year. We have families that we adopt for the holidays, so providing them with foods or gift cards for their family,” Shirley Skinner with the Abington Lions Club said.

Non-profits capitalize on Penndot’s “coffee breaks” initiative three or four times a year, making it one of its largest fundraising efforts.

“They rest, they refresh then they’re safe for the rest of their journey,” Skinner said.

It’s the same story for Faith United Methodist United Church of Slocum Township at the Dorrance rest area on I-81 North.

“With everything going on this past year, every donation has been wonderful. We couldn’t be thankful enough,” Alicia Baratta with Faith United Methodist Church said.

Baratta says everyone is wanting to get out after not traveling last year’s Memorial Day weekend due to the pandemic.

“It’s nice to see everyone smiling and finally getting outside,” Baratta said.

Faith United Methodist Church, Abington Lions Club and other non-profits will be at different interstate rest areas through out the weekend.

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