While snow slickened the streets and turned the city white, a Bellevue resident sat in her cozy home on Feb. 23 and counted her blessings.
As snow plows passed and made the streets safer, Laura Rodgers thought of those hard at work.
“I was in my warm home feeling very appreciative that they were all out there. It was dangerous for everybody involved,” Rodgers said.
Rodgers, a Bellevue native, said she loves her community and wanted to show gratitude.
That following Monday, Rodgers turned to Facebook and started a fundraiser seeking to provide lunch to city workers including plow drivers, police officers and firefighters.
“I wanted to say thank you,” Rodgers said. “I really think we have great people who work for our city.”
Her goal was to raise $500 for a pizza luncheon, but expected to only reach $100. To her surprise, it amounted to much more.
Within hours, the fundraiser exceeded its goal by $10.
“It makes me feel good that our community came together,” she said. “If it wasn’t for everybody else, it would just be an idea.”
On Thursday, Rodgers held a luncheon at the Reed Community Center and brought 65 Domino’s pizzas to city workers.
Sally Rodgers, Laura’s mother, even baked 500 homemade cookies for the occasion.
About 100 city workers attended the luncheon while others worked and cleaned the streets from the latest snowfall.
The remaining food was taken to the overnight crews.
Molly Rieple, automotive operative for the parks department and snow plow driver, said she appreciated the kind gesture.
“I thought it was really nice. It’s really cool to see people want to help out,” Rieple said. “It’s a nice little break off the roads.”
When it comes to city workers, Rodgers said, people tend to only think of them as a department.
“It’s our community,” she said. “Those are our neighbors out there and they never fail to surprise me.”