Popcorn and Twizzlers from Lindsay
At the kiosk in front of the LifeTown movie theater on a recent Thursday, Lindsay Kreinberg was ready. She had measured, popped, and bagged the popcorn. “Would you like some popcorn?” she asked, as a student on a school visit to LifeTown Shoppes approached. He handed her a dollar, and she gave him a package of popcorn and deposited the dollar in her apron. She asked if he was going to see a movie. “I’m going to do a bike ride.” She called out, “Have a wonderful day!”
Kreinberg finds it particularly fulfilling to be able to volunteer. When the Friendship Circle was getting its start in the early 2000s, she was among the first participants. Two teenage peers used to visit her through Friends at Home, one of its first programs. Now, at 34, it’s her turn to volunteer. Every Thursday, she comes with her father, Larry, and they set up the popcorn kiosk together. He’s there to support her and to help out if needed.
“I look forward to coming. I enjoy helping out– I like to help other people,” said Lindsay. “I like to give out popcorn to whoever wants it.” In the kiosk, she also sells Twizzlers and small bottles of water. When business is slow, she and her father take a few bags and deliver them to volunteers in the nail salon, the flower shop, and Shop Rite.
She and her father make a good team, and that’s part of the draw. “We get more quality time together!” she said.
First, they measure ingredients together. Then, he manages the popcorn machine; when the popcorn is ready, she gets the bags ready for him, hands them to him, and he fills them and returns them. She arranges them in a bin, ready for customers.
Recently, Lindsay’s Bubbe, Mitzi Kreinberg, 96, started volunteering with them at LifeTown. She works in the bank, giving out and collecting money at the beginning and end of each school visit. Every week when she finishes, she said, “I can’t wait to come back. I love dealing with the children and of course getting out of the house. They put me to work here and I feel I’m doing something good in this environment. I can’t say enough about it.”
When the volunteering is done, three generations of the Kreinberg family head back to Mitzi’s home nearby, where they all have lunch together.