Last week, the Shriners' food cart in Wilsonville was stolen and stripped bare of nearly all amenities inside of the cart. The stolen items included an air conditioning unit, cash register, grills, flooring, wiring, an electrical awning and more. The cart was recovered in northeast Portland this week, but as Shriner President Todd Weedman told us, "... it would cost more to repair than it would to replace it."
"We have about $15,000 invested in the [food cart], and we are not sure what insurance is going to pay. We had done so much through volunteer hours and donations, it's really difficult to estimate what the cost will be to replace it," he added.
The Al Kader Shriners in Wilsonville has been experiencing a noticeable uptick in theft and incidents recently at its facility on Boones Ferry Road.
"In the last year we've had four catalytic converters taken off vehicles." The thefts seem to be planned well in advance, as hauling equipment was needed to take the food cart away.
When asked for possible reasoning behind the targeting of the fraternal organization, Weedman said the Shriners' security systems were in need of updating.
"We had no fencing in that area…. We've apparently been identified as soft target," he said.
There is a HYPERLINK "www.gofundme.com/f/help-replace-stolen-shriner039s-food-cart?teamInvite=T99XUBpvv9hiIA20ljUhqXTC2oeDSnRYmSZNe38j382UkLrpmbTB3LJPnT8XCPqU" GoFundMe page up to help raise funds in order to replace the cart. One its first day June 21 there has already been over $1,800 raised. Weedman is encouraged by the support already being shown for the replacement of the cart and says that the organization's ultimate goal is to have the cart up and running for the organization's biggest fundraising event, Oktoberfest at Mount Angel towards the end of summer.
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