Junior History Club of Mineral Wells met at the Senior Center for their first meeting of the fall. New president Mary A. Smith presided.
President Smith thanked the hostess and program leader for the month who were Hilda Daughtry and Kathy Kirkpatrick.
Member Clydell Singleton introduced guest Mary Jo Thomas.
Program for the month was given by Barbara Cranfil, Director of Palo Pinto Challenge, Inc. Barbara came to Mineral Wells in 1975 as a special education teacher. She served in that capacity at several campuses until 1999 when she left to direct a program designed to serve handicapped young people after their tenure at school. The program was based on making salsa and selling it to the public, learning every part of the process and in a little while, they were able to get a building in Strawn, Texas. This group became the Palo Pinto Challenge, Inc., makers of Hale Center Salsa.
They are licensed food handlers and are given high marks from the state inspections. Barbara's motto is: “Everyone Works with Pride.”
Barbara showed slides of the young people at work and told how they have grown to be more independent and skilled.
She wants them to be able to answer the question: Can I live in this world?
These young people learn how to wash dishes and clothes. They learn how to mix and prepare the salsa.
They learn gardening skills and have a small garden outside their building in Strawn that does very well.
Palo Pinto Challenge is a non-profit organization. Money made from selling the Salsa takes care of most of their expense but they also depend on donations. One of their best fundraisers is the Sala Baron's Ball. They also sell tamales three times a year and they are very popular.