The Pine River-Backus Family Center is open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday-Thursday and 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday. The center will be closed Wednesday, Nov. 11, to observe Veterans Day and Thursday and Friday, Nov. 26-27, in observance of Thanksgiving. The center will also be closed Thursday, Dec. 24, through Friday, Jan. 1.

Following is a schedule of November events. Staff ask that only one person come into the family center at a time and masks are required. Call ahead if possible to 218-587-4292.

  • Radiothon to End Child Abuse: The family center will not host its annual fundraiser at the Salty Dog, nor will it participate in the auction. The family center thanks Tom Sewell for his help in past years with the program. The Radiothon will be Thursday and Friday, Dec. 3-4, and the family center encourages everyone to listen to the Radiothon and consider donating.
  • Christmas for Kids: The family center is looking for donations for the upcoming Christmas for Kids Program. Monetary donations can be dropped off or mailed to the family center at P.O. Box 1, Pine River, MN 56474. Donation boxes will be available at local businesses for families to donate toys. Applications to be included in the program will be available on the family center website and sent home to elementary students.
  • Pine River Area Food Shelf: The food shelf is open from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tuesdays and Fridays, and from 3:30-7 p.m. on the second Tuesday of the month (Nov. 10). The family center will be closed Friday, Nov. 27
  • MNsure Navigator: Call 218-587-4292 if you have any questions or to set up an appointment.
  • Pine River-Backus CommUnity Meals: A local collaborative effort provides free weekly meals to any who are hungry. Services are currently pickup only each Monday at the Riverview Church in Pine River or each Tuesday at the Backus Pine Mountaineer Senior Center. Serving time is 4-6 p.m. For more information or to volunteer, call 218-587-4292. There will be no Nov. 23 or 24 meals. There will, however, be a boxed Thanksgiving meal available from 3-6 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 25, at the Pine River American Legion.
  • Home Visiting Program: This is free through the Pine River-Backus Family Center. Home visiting begins prenatally or before children are 3 months old and continues through their 3rd birthday. Weekly home visits are filled with fun activities and information about a child’s development. From charting their first milestones, to identifying qualities and characteristics parents want in their child, the family support specialist will help parents pick out what is important and create ways to instill those same values in children. Free gift bags are available to all families who are expecting a baby or have a newborn and live in the Pine River-Backus School District.
  • Working Together Coalition and Opioid Prevention Team: Working Together Coalition and the Opioid Prevention Team are looking for community members to join the fight against the opioid epidemic. They invite interested individuals to visit for more information.
  • NAPS: Drive up pickup is from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 10.
  • WIC: Call Cass County at 218-547-6872 for an appointment.
  • Family Planning: Family planning will be at the family center Tuesday, Nov. 3. Call 877-275-6123 to schedule an appointment.
  • Child & Teen Check-Up: Call Karen at 218-587-4292 if you have any questions.

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