Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Moms, local business show troops they care

"Kay Rust, co-owner of The Rust Game Place, fills a gift basket with turkey jerky. The local business donated their homemade turkey jerky to the Canyon Lake area Blue Star Mothers to include in care packages to be sent to troops for Valentine's day." Photo by Miranda Laine

Moms, local business show troops they care

By Mark Koopmans

The Herald-Zeitung
Published January 30, 2008

Following the generosity of an area business, about 30 local service men and women will be receiving messages of love and at least two healthy treats when their next care package arrives. The troops, all of whom currently are deployed overseas, are supported directly by the members of the Canyon Lake Area Blue Star Mothers, one of only seven active chapters in Texas according to founding member Sharon Bryce. “I started this chapter of the Blue Star Mothers of America last year, after both my sons were deployed,” Bryce said Thursday. “At the beginning, there was only a few of us. Right now, members are re-signing for another year, and it looks like we’ve grown quite a bit. “We’ve about 70 members and associate members who are always looking for new ways to support our 30 kids who live in this area, as well as in Bastrop, San Marcos and even a few who are from San Antonio.”The organization, which is preparing to send care packages out for Valentine’s Day, recently contacted numerous businesses including The Rust Game Place in Clear Springs, to ask if they could help with a donation. “They immediately said they could, and would help,” said Bryce, who added her two sons now are back stateside. “All the money we have comes from donations, and most of that goes toward postage for care packages, so this was great news.”The Rust Game Place, located at 1778 Texas 46 South, originally was known as the Game Place when it first opened about 10 years ago. However, when the store was purchased in August 2005 by current owners Randy and Kay Rust, the couple decided to personalize the name of the store that provides deer processing services and also manufactures a variety of specialty meats, jerkies and cheeses that are mesquite smoked, said Kay Rust. “The (Blue Star) Moms called and we thought it was a wonderful idea,” she said. “We just want to give something back to the young men and women who are over there working so hard to keep us all safe.”The Rusts are donating more than $500 of turkey jerky, which is every calorie counters’ dream, Kay Rust said, adding that the half-pound packs of jerky are made with turkey breasts and white meat, which are marinated and cooked on the pit “for a flavorful mesquite smoked reward.”“Each of the troops will be getting two packs or a pound of turkey jerky each,” she said. “Randy and I have no one in our family fighting overseas, so this is the very least we can do.”The care packages are expected to be filled, sealed and posted by the first few days in February, Bryce said, adding that her organization is open to the community. “We know there are many more people who are on a deployment, but we can’t help them — yet — because we don’t know who they are,” she said. “As we are a support group for the families, anyone can join, and our meetings are the first Saturday of the month at 10:30 a.m. at St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church in Canyon Lake.”

For information about the Canyon Lake Area Blue Star Mothers, call (830) 899-4868, or visit

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