On Sept. 27, The Chill Zone hosted a fundraiser to help feed students at Puesta Del Sol Elementary School in Rio Rancho.

From 2- 8 p.m., people were encouraged to donate non-perishable food items, and part of anything sold at the store would go toward Isaiah’s Backpack Program at Puesta Del Sol.

Isaiah’s Backpack Program provides backpacks full of food to students who might need additional food over the weekend.

At the end of the night, The Chill Zone received multiple donations of food and wrote a check toward Isaiah’s Backpack Program.

The program was created by RRPS teacher Theresa Romo, and she named the program after her son, Isaiah Romo, who was a first-grade student at Puesta Del Sol who passed away from pneumonia in 2014.

“Last year, our program served 30 children here at PDSE. This year, we are expected to double in size. Our goal is to ensure that each of these children go home with a well-balanced backpack of food,” Romo said.

According to Romo, 78% of the students at Puesta Del Sol qualify for free or reduced lunches.

Teachers and staff worry that students may not have enough food for the time that they are not in school.

Everything helps, and Chill Zone co-owner Elaine Diaz is committed to doing her part to help the community.

“We still continue to host spirit nights every Wednesday to help schools, organizations and teams with fundraising … We are having a blast helping these amazing kids reach their goals,” Diaz said.

The Chill Zone has several upcoming events, including a Trunk or Treat from 5- 7 p.m. Oct. 31.

If you missed the event at The Chill Zone but would still like to donate, drop off any donations to Theresa Romo at  Puesta Del Sol Elementary School, 450 Southern Blvd. SE, Rio Rancho, Room 425.

Here is a list of some of the items needed:

  • Stew/soup/canned pasta/beans and franks in pop top cans or microwaveable packages
  • Cereal boxes/bowls
  • Pop-Tarts
  • Fruit cups
  • Applesauce cups
  • Granola bars and breakfast bars
  • Single serving tuna or chicken (especially those that include crackers and mayo packs)
  • Microwavable macaroni and cheese
  • Individual snack crackers or cookies (teddy grahams, crackers and peanut butter/cheese)
  • Packets of dried soup (Ramen noodles)
  • Individual oatmeal packets/bowls
  • Pudding cups
  • Peanut butter, single serve or jars
  • Jelly
  • Crackers
  • Vegetable cups (corn, green beans)
  • Raisins (snack-size boxes)
  • Popcorn (Individual bags)
  • Pretzels (single-serve bags)
  • Capri-Suns or Kool-Aid Jammers
  • Water bottles (8-ounce bottles)

For further information about Isaiah’s Backpack Program, contact Romo at 994-3305 ext.56872 or by email at [email protected]

Also, here are the upcoming events at The Chill Zone:

  • 20: Uno Duo, live music from 6-8 p.m.
  • 28: Paint night from 2-5 p.m.
  • 31: Trunk or Treat from 5-7:30 p.m.
  • Every Wednesday is spirit night.
  • Every Friday is Family Fun Night, with a different theme, 2-8 p.m.
  • Every Saturday is Karaoke/Dance Party from 6-8 p.m., featuring $1 granitas/slushies all day