The Cove will celebrate its 18th anniversary with an open house on April 21, with free hot dogs and desserts at the food bank on Glover Street in Twisp. The event is from noon-4 p.m.

“Come in for a free meal and say hello,” Executive Director Glenn Schmekel said.

During its 18th year of operation, Schmekel said, the food bank served a record high number of 110 households during one week in December last year, averaging 80 families a week during the past year. That’s about double the number of households served when the food bank opened in 1998, Schmekel said.

The Cove’s programs, in addition to its weekly food bank, include the Guardian Angels, who visit elderly or shut-in residents; Neighbors Helping Neighbors, the annual holiday food drive for those in need; Manger Mall, a gift program for local youngsters; Jamie’s Place Adult Family Homes; the Aid and Assistance Program for people in need of help with heating bills, rent and other utility expenses; and the Friday Food Program at local schools.

The Cove is sustained by donations, grants and fundraising events.

“Our financial support mainly comes from the caring people in the Methow Valley who are willing to help make a difference in the lives of our neighbors,” Schmekel said.

Lois Chavey, who has been volunteering at The Cove since 1998, said that Thursday [food bank day] “is the best day of my week. We’re just like family here.”

For more information, go to www.thecovercares.com or call 997-0227.