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Another Record-Breaking Year at RDO Caters Taters for Charity


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The 19th annual RDO Caters Taters for Charity luncheon raised $83,333 for the Great Plains Food Bank. 100% of proceeds will directly support the Great Plains Food Bank’s mission of ending hunger in North Dakota and western Minnesota. “Congratulations to RDO on another hugely successful Caters Taters for Charity event,” Great Plains Food Bank CEO, Steve Sellent said. “The funds raised will have a major impact in making sure that all those in our community and state facing hunger have food on the table this holiday season and beyond. We are grateful for the hard work and dedication of the staff at RDO in helping us solve hunger through this amazing event.” The Great Plains Food Bank is the largest hunger-relief organization in North Dakota and serves as the state’s only food bank. Each year, the Great Plains Food Bank touches the lives of one in nine individuals who seek emergency food assistance. This year’s event brings the grand total raised by RDO Caters Taters for Charity to more than $670,000. Throughout its 19 years, the event has supported nearly a dozen local charities including Anne Carlsen Center – Fargo, YWCA Cass Clay, and, the most recent benefiting charity of RDO Caters Taters for Charity, CCRI, Inc. Applications to be the event’s 2019 benefiting charity will be accepted beginning in January. for Like the Facebook page, follow RDOCatersTaters on Instagram, and watch the website to keep up on the latest event news, see special photos, and find out how to apply to be the benefiting charity for next year’s 20th anniversary event.






Thank You for Your Support of RDO Caters Taters for Charity


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This time of year, there’s a lot to be thankful for. With the 19th annual RDO Caters Taters for Charity event now in the books, the event committee and Great Plains Food Bank would like to offer a sincere and heartfelt thank you. Whether you dined in with us, took a to-go order back to your office, bought a raffle ticket, or made a monetary donation, your support will make a difference to those in the community who struggle with hunger. What kind of an impact do you have at a big event like this? Every $1 donated to Great Plains Food Bank provides three meals. That means: -If you bought a $5 bag of potatoes, you’re providing 15 meals -Your $8 lunch ticket equals 24 meals -Every $10 raffle ticket purchased will deliver 30 meals ----- Watch next week for the announcement of the total dollars raised for Great Plains Food Bank at this year’s RDO Caters Taters for Charity.






Your Instructions for RDO Caters Taters for Charity


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The day is almost here. RDO Caters Taters for Charity is on Tuesday, November 20. The event again is being held at the Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo and 100% of proceeds will be donated to Great Plains Food Bank. Whether dining in or taking lunch to-go to enjoy back at the office, here’s what all guests should know for tomorrow’s event. Dining Room RDO Caters Taters will take place in the Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo’s Crystal Ballroom. While there is no designated parking for dine-in guests, the venue offers ample space for parking. Doors open at 11 a.m. and the serving line will top its last potato at 1 p.m. Those without advance tickets may purchase them at the door while they last. Raffle tickets will also be available to purchase at the event; the raffle table is located in the entry space near the main door to the dining room. All prizes will be on display so stop by to see everything up for grabs. All attendees are eligible to receive a door prize and are encouraged to visit the door prizes table prior to leaving the event. Take Out Instructions Take Out is a fast, easy way for event supporters to enjoy lunch with coworkers, friends, or on their own if they’re unable to dine in. All orders are to be picked up at the Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo’s Crystal Ballroom. The doors on the southwest side of the building are the best points of access to pick up orders. There is a limited number of reserved parking spots for Take Out and plenty of additional parking space is available. Each Take Out order includes a designated pick up time so please plan to pick up in that timeframe. Walk-in orders will be accommodated while potatoes and toppings last. Raffle tickets are also available onsite for Take Out guests. Tickets may be purchased at the raffle table, located in the entry space near the main door to the dining room. Thank You Finally, and most importantly, all guests must know how much their support matters to the Great Plains Food Bank. For every charitable dollar received, Great Plains Food Bank can provide three meals. A $5 bag of potatoes turns into 15 meals An $8 lunch ticket equals 24 meals A $10 raffle ticket means 30 meals Every potato, every ticket, every dollar matters. The RDO Caters Taters committee and the Great Plains Food Bank extend a heartfelt and sincere thank you to all 2018 supporters. ----- Join us for RDO Caters Taters for Charity, Tuesday, November 20 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo. 100% of proceeds benefit Great Plains Food Bank. See event photos and special updates by following RDO Caters Taters on Facebook and Instagram .






Spotlight on Our Product Partners


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The take-out containers that keep your office’s lunches organized and warm. Bacon bits, cheese, and all the tasty tater toppings available. Even the cutlery guests use to dig in and enjoy their pound-tato. RDO Caters Taters for Charity wouldn’t be possible without generous donations from several product partners. Take a look at this year’s product partners and find out the role each plays in making RDO Caters Taters a fun, enjoyable, and delicious event. Event Experience The Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo is now in its second year hosting RDO Caters Taters. The venue offers guests a large, comfortable area to gather, dine, and grab to-go orders. Even before walking through the hotel’s doors on event day, attendees have a chance to connect with RDO Caters Taters thanks to several partners. All the graphics shared on the event’s website, Facebook page, and Instagram, along with everything from posters to tickets, are designed by Red River Valley Design. And speaking of tickets, event tickets and raffle tickets are printed and provided by J&M Printing. Many community members hear about the event through interviews and promotions from radio partner, KFGO. The team also joins the fun on event day, broadcasting live from RDO Caters Taters and taking the inaugural trip through the serving line to create the first pound-tato of the day. Upon entering the event space, guests are welcomed and directed with banners and other signage, courtesy of Signs 4 Work. Because RDO Caters Taters is a little bit different every year, Dan Francis Photography captures images that are saved and shared with the charity and community. Food, Food, FOOD Perhaps the best part of RDO Caters Taters is the food. The event’s famous pound-tatoes are hauled from one of R.D. Offutt Farms’ locations more than 400 miles away, thanks to FedEx. Bacon bits are donated by Hormel Foods, while the shredded cheese come all the way from the west coast, donated by Tillamook. Other tater toppings include chili, made and donated by Eurest, buffalo chicken, made and donated by Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo, and salsa, donated by Sysco. While the potato is the event’s shining star, a beverage and dessert complete the meal. Coca Cola Bottling Company High Country donates a variety of soda, while Costco donates the delicious and giant cookies. Cole Papers provides cutlery packs and to-go containers, ensuring guests enjoy lunch whether dining in or taking out. Additional food preparation supplies are provided courtesy of Staples and Target. Because of these generous donations from product partners, RDO Caters Taters is able to give 100% of proceeds – every potato enjoyed, every ticket sold, and every dollar raised – to Great Plains Food Bank. ----- Join us for RDO Caters Taters for Charity, Tuesday, November 20 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo. 100% of proceeds benefit Great Plains Food Bank. See event photos and special updates by following RDO Caters Taters on Facebook and Instagram .






The Full Experience at RDO Caters Taters for Charity


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The benefiting charity. The pound-tato. The toppings. At RDO Caters Taters for Charity, these three are the main focus, the reason why most attend or support the event. But there are additional parts of RDO Caters Taters that make up the full event experience. Make sure to enjoy every aspect of RDO Caters Taters and additional opportunities to support Great Plains Food Bank in these five ways. Raffle Tickets One of the most exciting parts of RDO Caters Taters is the raffle – particularly, the prizes up for grabs. With grand prizes featuring a 65-inch television, airline tickets, and a drone, plus great additional prizes, there are plenty of reasons to take a chance and purchase a raffle ticket…or a dozen. Door Prizes All guests are eligible to win a door prize on the way out of the dining room. Don’t forget to stop by the door prizes table before leaving. Photo Booth If an event happens and it’s not on social media, did it really happen? Guests are encouraged to share their event experience by visiting the fun photo booth, complete with potato-themed props. Use the hashtag #RDOCatersTaters to share photos, whether at the event or enjoying Take Out taters back at the office. Bagged Potatoes In case a pound-tato isn’t enough, ten-pound bags of potatoes are available for purchase. Visit the bagged potatoes table in the event entryway to pick up a bag. Dessert and Beverage After making the trip through the potato topping line, it’s easy to immediately look for a table to sit down and enjoy. Make sure to go all the way through the line, grabbing a cookie and beverage to round out the meal. ----- Join us for RDO Caters Taters for Charity, Tuesday, November 20 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo. 100% of proceeds benefit Great Plains Food Bank. See event photos and special updates by following RDO Caters Taters on Facebook and Instagram .






Thank You to Our Sponsors – PricewaterhouseCoopers


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RDO Caters Taters for Charity is possible because of the goods, services, and dollars donated by generous companies that support the event year after year. We’re pleased to highlight our Hot Potato sponsors with a special feature here on the blog. Read to find out more about one of our Dining Room sponsors, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), including how PwC’s relationship with R.D. Offutt Company and RDO Caters Taters connects the company on several levels. PwC PwC is a “Big 4” global accounting firm originating in London in the 1850s, with a presence in the Twin Cities and Upper Midwest going back to the 1960s. Today PwC is the world’s largest professional services firm with more than 250,000 employees in almost every major city in the world serving clients in the areas of assurance, tax, human resources, transactions, operational improvement, and crisis management. For more than 15 years, PwC has been the audit firm and tax advisor for R.D. Offutt Company, working across all lines of the company’s major areas of business, including international. PwC’s mission is “To build trust in society and solve important problems.” Driven by this mission and values, PwC is proud of the impact it has on communities, while delivering value to clients. An example of PwC giving back to the community includes PwC’s Access Your Potential® initiative investing $320 million, as well as thousands of volunteer hours to equip young people from underserved communities with the financial, technology, and career-selection skills they need to change the trajectory of their lives. Philanthropy and Friendships When Dave Horner, RDO Equipment Co.’s Corporate Controller, approached PwC a few years ago about sponsoring RDO Caters Taters, PwC tax partner, Tom McCarr says the company eagerly accepted – and for more than one reason. At first glance, PwC’s sponsorship of RDO Caters Taters could be chalked up to the charitable aspect of the event and how that aligns with PwC’s mission and culture. As Tom says, “We recognize and appreciate that R.D. Offutt Company is a leader in the Fargo-Moorhead community in terms of philanthropy and its team members want to give back. PwC shares a similar philosophy of volunteering and giving back to our communities, so this event is a great fit for us.” A unique part of RDO Caters Taters that the PwC team especially likes is that it supports a new charity every year. According to Jon Friese, PwC audit partner, “R.D. Offutt Company recognizes there are many great organizations making a meaningful difference in the Fargo-Moorhead community and it shows the company’s desire to support the Fargo-Moorhead community as a whole.” The event’s charitable focus aside, Tom admits that one of the reasons PwC continues to sponsor and attend the event each year is personal and simple – the PwC team enjoys the event and going to Fargo to attend it. In fact, many of the PwC team members who serve R.D. Offutt Company grew up in small towns in North Dakota or northwestern Minnesota, or are graduates of North Dakota universities. Tom said of the PwC team, “I think it just adds to the reason why several of us enjoy working with R.D. Offutt Company and supporting RDO Caters Taters. Our team feels really connected on many levels.” Visit PwC’s website to learn more about the company and services it offers. ----- Join us for RDO Caters Taters for Charity, Tuesday, November 20 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo. 100% of proceeds benefit Great Plains Food Bank. See event photos and special updates by following RDO Caters Taters on Facebook and Instagram .






Thank You to Our Sponsors – Topcon


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RDO Caters Taters for Charity is possible because of the goods, services, and dollars donated by generous companies that support the event year after year. We’re pleased to highlight our Hot Potato sponsors with a special feature here on the blog. Read to find out more about one of our Dining Room sponsors, Topcon, including how attendees may be familiar with Topcon equipment, but not even know it. Topcon Around the Fargo-Moorhead area there’s never a shortage of construction projects, from new buildings to road work. While it might not be as easy to see compared to machines like skid steers or wheel loaders, Topcon likely has equipment present on these jobsites – equipment that provides a key piece to the complete project puzzle. Topcon provides hardware and software, such as GPS machine control and grading systems for construction machines, as well as precise positioning equipment used by surveyors, all designed to make work faster and more accurate. In addition to providing solutions for the construction industry, Topcon offers precision agriculture technology for all seasons, crops, terrain, and equipment. Nearly 10 years ago, technology had become so important to RDO Equipment Co. customers’ businesses, the company established RDO Integrated Controls, a division focused on delivering technology solutions from Topcon. Since then, the companies have enjoyed a partnership providing and supporting customers with the latest technology opportunities to improve accuracy and efficiency on the jobsite. The partnership extends beyond technology and includes a community and giving side, with Topcon’s support of RDO Caters Taters. Solving Challenges Together Like many R.D. Offutt Company and RDO Equipment Co. business partners, Topcon was invited to support RDO Caters Taters – an invitation the company eagerly accepted. “It’s part of our company’s culture to give back and we’re always grateful to see our business partners doing the same,” Jamie Williamson, Vice President of Sales, said. “We appreciate opportunities to support communities where we do business, like Fargo.” This year, in particular, Topcon’s support of RDO Caters Taters is especially significant. With agriculture being one of Topcon’s key areas of business, it’s no surprise the company is passionate about its role in feeding the world, particularly using technology to meet the demands of an ever-growing population. Jamie says the Great Plains Food Bank’s mission, aimed at ending hunger, resonated with the company. “We’ve been supporting the event for a few years now,” he said. “Finding out that this year’s charity is focused on feeding the hungry made us more excited to get involved again this year.” For nearly a decade, Topcon and RDO Equipment Co. have worked together to better the industry through delivering and supporting jobsite technology. This year, they’re working together to better the F-M community through support of RDO Caters Taters and the Great Plains Food Bank. Visit Topcon’s website to learn more about the products it offers for excavating, grading, paving, and more. ----- Join us for RDO Caters Taters for Charity, Tuesday, November 20 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo. 100% of proceeds benefit Great Plains Food Bank. See event photos and special updates by following RDO Caters Taters on Facebook and Instagram .






Thank You to Our Sponsors – Rabobank


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RDO Caters Taters for Charity is possible because of the goods, services, and dollars donated by generous companies that support the event year after year. We’re pleased to highlight our Hot Potato sponsors with a special feature here on the blog. Read to find out more about one of our Dining Room sponsors, Rabobank, including how the bank is working with partners across the Food & Agriculture industry in fulfilling its mission of ‘Growing A Better World Together’. Rabobank With roots in the agriculture industry dating back more than 115 years, Rabobank today is one of the world’s largest financial services leaders. This includes its standing as one of the world’s largest banks, providing wholesale and retail banking, leasing, and real estate services in more than 40 countries worldwide. In the United States, Rabobank is a premier bank to the food and agribusiness industries. This focus is a natural fit with R.D. Offutt Company’s key area of business, and was the basis of the partnership between the two companies that formed more than 20 years ago. It’s no wonder that, today, Andre Baladi, a Relationship Manager within Rabobank’s Wholesale Banking team, describes the partnership between his company and R.D. Offutt Company as, “very deep and long-standing.” “To say we’re attached at the hip wouldn’t be too far off the mark,” he added, with a laugh. The relationship extends further than business, as Andre says Rabobank is always looking for ways to better connect with the Food & Agriculture industry and differentiate itself from other banks with its sector focus and expertise. RDO Caters Taters is one of the ways they’ve been able to do just that. Eating Food, Doing Good Tom Espel, R.D. Offutt Company Corporate Treasurer, has worked with Rabobank since the relationship formed, and is the one who initially approached the team about sponsoring RDO Caters Taters. “Participating in charitable events like this is an important part of our culture,” Andre said. “We enjoy opportunities to support our partners through various community initiatives and RDO Caters Taters felt like a great one.” In addition to continued sponsorship of the event, the Rabobank team typically makes the trip to Fargo to attend the event. Last year, Andre joined a few of his colleagues and Tom for his first pound-tato lunch. “It was exciting to see so many people attending the event,” he recalled of his first RDO Caters Taters experience. “The committee does a great job drawing in a crowd.” In addition to the delicious food and fun atmosphere, Rabobank enjoys the community giving side of RDO Caters Taters. The team appreciates the opportunity to support new charitable causes each year and, this year, Andre says they’re especially excited to help further the mission of the Great Plains Food Bank. “It’s a great cause and one that’s close to Rabobank’s heart, too,” he said. “Members from our office volunteer at our local food bank at least once a year and I know many of our other offices do as well.” Visit the Rabobank website to learn more about the company’s different areas of expertise in meeting the needs of the Food & Agriculture industry. ----- Join us for RDO Caters Taters for Charity, Tuesday, November 20 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo. 100% of proceeds benefit Great Plains Food Bank. See event photos and special updates by following RDO Caters Taters on Facebook and Instagram .






Behind the Scenes Working with RDO Caters Taters for Charity


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Every year, RDO Caters Taters for Charity partners with a new non-profit. This unique format raises funds for many deserving charities, while also exposes RDO team members and attendees to different, worthy causes in the community. Many community members are familiar with RDO Caters Taters, whether they’ve attended the event, enjoyed a pound-tato to-go, or just heard about it from friends or coworkers – but few get to see what the event is like from the charity’s perspective. Two years ago, YWCA Cass Clay was chosen as RDO Caters Taters’ benefiting charity. Erin Prochnow, CEO, talks about what it was like working behind-the-scenes on the annual potato luncheon. Great Expectations Although the YWCA team was familiar with RDO Caters Taters, having attended the event for years, Erin admitted they didn’t know what to expect going into it – including when they found out they were chosen as the benefiting charity for the November 2016 event. In the spring of 2016, a few members of the RDO Caters Taters committee scheduled a meeting with the YWCA team. “We believed we were being considered and the committee was doing ‘final interviews’ to select the charity,” Erin recalled. Instead, the committee surprised Erin and her team by announcing they were indeed the selected charity and that 100% of proceeds from the 2016 event would benefit the YWCA’s emergency shelter. “Sheer excitement!” Erin said with a smile, when asked what their reaction was to the news. “It also meant a lot to us that such a well-respected organization like RDO believed in our organization and our mission enough to choose us as the benefiting charity.” As pleasantly surprised as they were to receive the news was the process of working with the RDO Caters Taters committee to execute the event. Team Effort Based on her years attending, Erin knew RDO Caters Taters was a well-run event. She soon realized just how much went into the planning and execution of this particular event, and – more importantly – how big a role each individual committee member played in its success. “Events aren’t easy; they take a lot of time, planning, effort,” she said. “Looking back, I understood the event was a big undertaking, but I don’t think I realized the full extent of what it entailed.” Erin said she enjoyed seeing how passionate the committee was about what they were doing. From wrapping potatoes before the event to greeting guests at the door on event-day, Erin says the YWCA team felt the energy from RDO Caters Taters committee, “and that’s what I remember the most.” She especially appreciated how well-orchestrated the event planning and execution process was so that their group of volunteers – including herself, her colleagues, and a mix of board members and other YWCA supporters – could spend most of their time on event-day interacting with guests and thanking them for their support. Supporting Safe Shelter After offering a peek behind-the-scenes at RDO Caters Taters, Erin also wanted to give a glimpse behind-the-scenes after the event – particularly, how the dollars were put to work in the YWCA’s emergency shelter. “Every dollar and every donation matters,” she said. Last year alone, the YWCA provided safe shelter to 1,400 women and children, and a total of 23,334 nights of shelter. Breaking things down a bit further, Erin explained that it costs $44 to provide a woman or child one night of shelter. “RDO Caters Taters and Fargo-Moorhead community raised $70,000 for us,” she said with a smile. “That’s a lot of nights of safe shelter.” ----- Join us for RDO Caters Taters for Charity, Tuesday, November 20 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo. 100% of proceeds benefit Great Plains Food Bank. See event photos and special updates by following RDO Caters Taters on Facebook and Instagram .






Thank You to Our Sponsors – Hays Companies


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RDO Caters Taters for Charity is possible because of the goods, services, and dollars donated by generous companies that support the event year after year. We’re pleased to highlight our Hot Potato sponsors with a special feature here on the blog. Read to find out more about one of our Dining Room sponsors, Hays Companies, including the unexpected way it became a sponsor of RDO Cater Taters. Hays Companies Founded in 1994, Hays Companies is now one of the fastest-growing risk management, insurance, and employee benefits consultancy firms in the country. It has more than 30 offices, including its headquarters in Minneapolis, where the company got its start. Barry Bremer, Senior Vice President in Account Management, first became familiar with R.D. Offutt Company in 1997 while doing consulting work with another company in Grand Forks, ND, after the city’s historic flood. Shortly after, he joined Hays Companies – and not long after that, Hays Companies and R.D. Offutt Company began a partnership, one that is still going strong today. Hays Companies was built on the entrepreneurial spirit of its founder and leaders. It’s a company with global partnerships. It’s a company committed to giving the best to customers, employees, and communities. In other words, it’s a company that has a lot in common with R.D. Offutt Company. Another thing the two have in common, like many companies with a widespread footprint, is a commitment to giving back, not only in their own communities, but also those where they do business. After nearly two decades of partnership with R.D. Offutt Company, Hays Companies’ continued support each year of RDO Caters Taters isn’t surprising. What is surprising? How Hays Companies came to be a sponsor of the event. Seeking a Sponsorship Most charitable events put in the time and effort each year to proactively seek out sponsors – not an uncommon practice. In the case of RDO Caters Taters, securing a sponsorship from Hays Companies came the opposite way. “We wanted to support R.D. Offutt Company in more than just the business, so we went looking for a charitable cause close to the company that we could support,” Barry explained. He reached out to Loren Stahl, R.D. Offutt Company’s Director of Risk Management, to find out if there was an organization or cause important to the company, something that Hays Companies could support, too. That’s when Loren mentioned a new event the company was hosting, a potato luncheon called RDO Caters Taters for Charity. Hays Companies got behind the event then and has been ever since. Barry makes it a point to attend RDO Caters Taters almost every year and has enjoyed the event experience throughout the years. He also shared one of, what he feels is the most impressive things about the event – and it’s not the growth, variety of benefiting charities, or even the selection of tasty tater toppings most might think. “It’s the people,” Barry said. “The way R.D. Offutt Company employees get behind the event and make it happen every year, it’s just amazing.” Barry says the Hays Companies team is excited to support the event again this year, with the Great Plains Food Bank as the benefiting charity. “It’s another great community charity.” He added, “Our Minneapolis team supports a food bank in our city so there’s that little extra tie for us.” Visit Hays Compananies' website to learn more about the company and services it offers. ---------- Join us for RDO Caters Taters for Charity, Tuesday, November 20 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo. 100% of proceeds benefit Great Plains Food Bank. See event photos and special updates by following RDO Caters Taters on Facebook and Instagram .






Thank You to Our Sponsors – Truck Utilities


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RDO Caters Taters for Charity is possible because of the goods, services, and dollars donated by generous companies that support the event year after year. We’re pleased to highlight our Hot Potato sponsors with a special feature here on the blog. Read to find out more about one of our Dining Room sponsors, Truck Utilities, including why the community, charity, and simple fun aspects of the event are important. Truck Utilities Established in St. Paul Minnesota more than 50 years ago, Truck Utilities specializes in outfitting commercial vehicles with various accessories needed to provide specific services. Whether a company’s vehicle needs a crane or a snowplow, Truck Utilities has the tools and expertise to customize all makes and models. Truck Utilities has been serving the Fargo-Moorhead area since 2001. RDO Equipment and R.D. Offutt Company began a partnership with Truck Utilities in 2002, a partnership that now extends across the companies, including field service trucks for RDO Equipment Co. technicians, and vehicles for the RDO Vermeer and RDO Water divisions, too. With its full support of the companies, it only seemed fitting for Truck Utilities to partner with RDO Caters Taters. Company Values When choosing charitable causes to support in the F-M community, Branch Manager, John Grove carefully and selectively looks at each opportunity he is presented. RDO Caters Taters is one he is always eager to support because, as John states, “Having the opportunity to partner with RDO for a great event that brings together the community and other organizations is something we want to be a part of.” The community and camaraderie aspects of the event are important to Truck Utilities, as building customer relationships and investing time to build a stronger community is something the company values. John also feels the work of this year’s charitable partner, Great Plains Food Bank, is important in the community. “The Great Plains Food Bank is an asset that is great for people who have fallen on hard times or need assistance to access nutritious food and necessary health items for daily life,” he said. While there are several important reasons Truck Utilities continues to sponsor RDO Caters Taters each year, John points out the simple fun of it all and enjoyment he gets from the event. “I look forward to attending RDO Caters Taters ever year,” he said with a smile. “It’s a great break in the middle of the day to go out, eat a pound-tato, and see others in our community.” Visit Truck Utilities' website to learn more about the company and the custom vehicles it offers. ------ Join us for RDO Caters Taters for Charity, Tuesday, November 20 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo. 100% of proceeds benefit Great Plains Food Bank. See event photos and special updates by following RDO Caters Taters on Facebook and Instagram .






Special Ways the Great Plains Food Bank Fights Hunger


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The Great Plains Food Bank is known for being the only food bank serving North Dakota and western Minnesota. As part of its role as the largest hunger-relief organization in North Dakota, the Great Plains Food Bank offers programs and services for children, seniors, and families. Learn more about these programs and the various ways RDO Caters Taters for Charity’s 2018 event funds will be used to impact communities across the Great Plains Food Bank footprint. Child Nutrition More than 33,000 children across North Dakota rely on free and reduced lunches. This federal program is important and ensures these children’s nutritional needs are met during the school day – but outside of that, they struggle with hunger. Great Plains Food Bank offers three special programs specific to child nutrition. 1. The Backpack Program provides beverages, meals, and snacks for children to take home and have over the weekend. 2. The School Pantry Program offers discreet access to food at school, as well as libraries, parks, and youth sites. 3. Because hunger doesn’t take a summer vacation, the Youth Summer Meals Program operates weekdays throughout the summer, giving children a place to enjoy a nutritious lunch. Disaster Relief Great Plains Food Bank is a member of the North Dakota Voluntary Relief Organizations Active in Disaster (NDVOAD) and lends support on several fronts when disaster strikes. Food and supplies are directed to emergency feeding centers operated by NDVOAD. Mobile Food Pantry Through the Mobile Food Pantry, fresh vegetables, meat, bakery items, and boxed goods are distributed right off one of Great Plains Food Bank’s delivery trucks directly to people in need. Those in need of food assistance are welcome to come to a Mobile Food Pantry site and receive food. Pop-Up Perishable Similar to the Mobile Food Pantry, the Pop-Up Perishable Program provides fresh fruit, vegetables, meat, and shelf-stable items to those in need at select sites. Anyone needing food is welcome to come and take what they need. Senior Food Pack Program (CSFP) CSFP is the only USDA nutrition program that provides monthly food assistance for low-income seniors age 60 and older. The program provides nutritionally-balanced, shelf-stable food packages. Only 39 states operate CSFP so Great Plains Food Bank is proud to offer the program in several North Dakota counties. Perishable Food Recovery This program works with local grocery stores, bakeries, restaurants, and other outlets to rescue surplus prepared meals, and frozen and perishable products that can then be distributed to shelters, soup kitchens, and emergency food pantries. SNAP Outreach The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), more commonly known as the food stamp program, assists those with little or no income to buy food. The Great Plains Food Bank is part of a nationwide SNAP outreach effort that includes raising awareness about SNAP benefits and eligibility, providing assistance in applying for SNAP benefits, and reducing barriers to accessing food assistance programs. Every dine-in ticket, Take Out order, raffle ticket – every dollar raised at RDO Caters Taters for Charity is helping the Great Plains Food Bank carry out its mission through these programs. ----- Join us for RDO Caters Taters for Charity, Tuesday, November 20 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo. 100% of proceeds benefit Great Plains Food Bank. See event photos and special updates by following RDO Caters Taters on Facebook and Instagram .






Thank You to Our Sponsors – John Deere


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RDO Caters Taters for Charity is possible because of the goods, services, and dollars donated by generous companies that support the event year after year. We’re pleased to highlight our Hot Potato sponsors with a special feature here on the blog. Read to find out more about one of our Take Out sponsors, John Deere, a company with which – well-known to most reading this – R.D. Offutt Company has enjoyed one of its longest partnerships. John Deere Since the company was founded in 1837, John Deere has delivered products and services to support those linked to the land. That year, blacksmith John Deere created his first plow, a highly polished steel mold board from a broken sawblade, and since then the company has innovated, diversified, and grown. It’s no secret that a relationship – and a significant one – exists between R.D. Offutt Company and John Deere. From the towering John Deere signs at the RDO Equipment Co. store in Moorhead to green tractors farming the R.D. Offutt Farms’ fields in Park Rapids, virtually everyone in the communities would recognize John Deere as a major partner of R.D. Offutt Company. John Deere’s support of RDO Caters Taters spills over into its own values and focus on community support and, this year, an added link to benefiting charity, Great Plains Food Bank. Local and Global Impact John Deere is committed to the communities where its company has a presence so it’s not surprising that, with the Moorhead RDO Equipment Co. store and hundreds of customers in the area, the Fargo-Moorhead community is no exception. In addition to supporting RDO Caters Taters because of its ties to R.D. Offutt Company and local customers, this year’s event holds a little extra meaning for John Deere because of Great Plains Food Bank and its mission to end hunger. John Deere too is focused on finding solutions for hunger, both on a local and a global level. The company supports various programs in local communities, as well as focuses initiatives in Africa and Asia. John Deere’s work to transform under-resourced agricultural communities in developing countries includes training for farmers, value-chain enhancement, and access to water. A tradition with deep roots in agriculture. A global presence in feeding the world. A commitment to communities and charitable causes. In addition to an RDO Caters Taters partnership, these are just a few things John Deere and R.D. Offutt Company have in common. Visit John Deere's website to learn more about the company and the equipment it offers. ----- Join us for RDO Caters Taters for Charity, Tuesday, November 20 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo. 100% of proceeds benefit Great Plains Food Bank. See event photos and special updates by following RDO Caters Taters on Facebook and Instagram .






Thank You to Our Sponsors – Nilles Lawyers


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RDO Caters Taters for Charity is possible because of the goods, services, and dollars donated by generous companies that support the event year after year. We’re pleased to highlight our Hot Potato sponsors with a special feature here on the blog. Read to find out more about one of our Dining Room sponsors, Nilles Lawyers, including how the team has fun at work and supports charitable causes at the same time. Nilles Lawyers The North Dakota Supreme Court. The federal judiciary. Ambassador of the United States. What do these three things have in common? All three have had representation from Nilles Lawyers’ attorneys. While having its attorneys in all three of these prestigious positions is noteworthy for the company, Nilles Lawyers is proudest of its longtime standing in the Fargo-Moorhead community, a presence dating back to the early 1900s. The company was established in downtown Fargo a century ago and, throughout those years, has expanded into more than 10 areas of practice, and added Northern Title, a division that provides complete closing and escrow services in Minnesota and North Dakota. Nilles Lawyers is especially proud of the partnerships it has established with local companies, one of them being R.D. Offutt Company. The firm’s personal connections to both R.D. Offutt Company and charitable causes is one of the reasons Nilles Lawyers began supporting RDO Caters Taters since the inaugural year. Support and Fun The very first year RDO Caters Taters was held, it was in support of the American Cancer Society. Many people at the firm have lost family members to cancer, so when it was a natural fit for the firm to support RDO Caters Taters from the beginning. The firm also has lawyers that went to law school with Paul Noah, General Counsel for R.D. Offutt Company. While both business and personal relationships have kept RDO Caters Taters sponsorship top of mind with Nilles Lawyers, it’s the sheer fun of the event that gets the team excited to participate every year. Attorneys and staff regularly attend the event, purchase raffle tickets, or order Take Out. While they love the food and think the raffle is exciting, just seeing friends there every year makes it a fun event to attend. Speaking of fun, last fall the team at Nilles Lawyers had some fun of their own in support of this year’s RDO Caters Taters benefiting charity, Great Plains Food Bank. In conjunction with a Monday Night Football game, all employees were encouraged to wear their favorite Vikings jersey with a donation to the Great Plains Food Bank. It was also Halloween, so people could wear costumes as an alternative to their favorite Vikings jersey. The firm and individual attorneys also matched the donations of the staff so Nilles Lawyers was able to make a substantial donation to the Great Plains Food Bank. Supporting RDO Caters Taters’ benefiting charities has come full-circle for Nilles Lawyers, with American Cancer Society the first year and Great Plains Food Bank this year. But no matter which charity is selected each year, Nilles Lawyers is proud to continue its support. “We think it’s great the event involves different charities each year,” one attorney at Nilles Lawyers said. “It shows R.D. Offutt Company’s commitment to the entire community and that’s important to us, too so we’re happy to be part of it.” ----- Join us for RDO Caters Taters for Charity, Tuesday, November 20 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo. 100% of proceeds benefit Great Plains Food Bank. See event photos and special updates by following RDO Caters Taters on Facebook and Instagram .






Take Out Lets Everyone Enjoy RDO Caters Taters


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When most people think about RDO Caters Taters for Charity, the images that may come to mind are walking through the serving line and enjoying lunch in the dining room of the Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo – maybe even snagging a photo with Tommy Tater on the way out. While the dining experience is something the RDO Caters Taters committee works hard to make special, there’s a separate part of the event most never see. And it’s actually the most common way people enjoy their pound-tato lunch: Take Out. Pound-Tatos To-Go RDO Caters Taters’ Take Out option has steadily grown in popularity, now with more than half of the event’s lunches taken to-go and eaten offsite. Bell Bank is one company that has been ordering Take Out since the earliest days of the event. Amy Wolf, Vice President and Human Resources Manager, is a longtime employee of Bell Bank and has watched the event evolve throughout the years. She even recalls the early days of Take Out, before online ordering was available and all orders were called in. As the event has evolved and grown throughout the year, participation from Bell Bank has increased along with it. “Efficiencies like online ordering have made it easier for our employees to participate, as the event can accommodate our large corporate order,” she said. How large? Last year, Bell Bank ordered more than 200 Take Out lunches. One of the reasons the company places such large orders every year ties back to its values and desire to offer something enjoyable to team members. Employee Engagement It’s no secret to most in the F-M area that, like R.D. Offutt Company, Bell Bank is focused on culture and employee engagement. According to Amy, ordering RDO Caters Taters Take Out lunch is something employees love and look forward to every year, so the company makes the effort to ensure all have the opportunity to participate. “We order for all our locations in Fargo, Moorhead, and West Fargo,” she said. Several employees pitch in to help organize orders and take care of the pickup and delivery to the different locations. “Ordering Take Out allows participation from our frontline teams who are staffing locations through the lunch hour.” With numerous Bell Bank locations around the community, and all those potato orders year after year, one might wonder if there’s a pound-tato topping that’s always popular among Bell Bank employees. Amy shares with a smile, “It’s a tie between cheese and sour cream!” Whether it’s giving all employees the opportunity to take part in RDO Caters Taters or simply a convenient way to enjoy lunch, Take Out is a great way for individuals and businesses to participate in the event and give back to the community. Take Out ordering will open this fall. Those interested in placing an order – whether one pound-tato or 100 – can sign up to be notified when Take Out ordering opens. ----- Join us for RDO Caters Taters for Charity, Tuesday, November 20 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo. 100% of proceeds benefit Great Plains Food Bank. See event photos and special updates by following RDO Caters Taters on Facebook and Instagram .






Thank You to Our Sponsors – Eide Bailly


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RDO Caters Taters for Charity is possible because of the goods, services, and dollars donated by generous companies that support the event year after year. We’re pleased to highlight our Hot Potato sponsors with a special feature here on the blog. Read to find out more about one of our Dining Room sponsors, Eide Bailly, including a few traits it shares with R.D. Offutt Company. Eide Bailly Those who have heard of Eide Bailly likely think of the company as a specialist in audit and tax compliance – and it is. But this Top 20 CPA firm is also much more than that. Founded in 1917, Eide Bailly recently achieved a milestone few companies reach – 100 years in business. Throughout that century, the company that began as an accounting firm has grown in number of employees and locations, as well as services offered. In the past 15 years, innovation has led the way in the company’s evolution, with business advisory services becoming more of a focus. Just as it doesn’t limit itself to one or two areas of service, Eide Bailly doesn’t focus on only one or two types of key customers. The company, which has locations in 14 states, partners with companies of all sizes and in a variety of industries. One of those is R.D. Offutt Company, which is how Eide Bailly came to be a sponsor of RDO Caters Taters since the event’s early days. But the reason Eide Bailly continues to support the event goes beyond the great relationship it has with R.D. Offutt Company. Community Focused Like R.D. Offutt Company, Eide Bailly is invested in the communities in which it does business. According to Chad Flanagan, Partner in Charge of the Fargo office, it’s one of the major reasons the company continues to sponsor and participate in RDO Caters Taters every year. “We enjoy supporting companies like ours that care about the community and are committed to giving back,” he said. “R.D. Offutt Company has a great culture of giving back and we’re proud to be part of that.” Every year he has attended RDO Caters Taters, Chad is always impressed by the number of people who take part, saying, “It seems like the whole town buzzes about it. It’s great to see so many members of the community show up to support the event and charitable partners.” In addition to Eide Bailly sponsoring and attending the event, several team members look forward to the event, with some attending and others ordering take out – because, according to several of them, “The potatoes are delicious!” Another shared trait of Eide Bailly and R.D. Offutt Company is that both businesses began in the F-M community and both maintain their company headquarters here. The fact that RDO Cater Taters’ benefiting charities are all right here within the area also motivates Eide Bailly to support the event every year. “This year’s charity, Great Plains Food Bank, serves a great need in our community,” Chad said. “Every year the charities RDO Caters Taters supports are so deserving, it makes it an easy decision for us participate.” Visit Eide Bailly’s website to learn more about the company, its locations, and how it celebrated 100 years in business in 2017. ----- Join us for RDO Caters Taters for Charity, Tuesday, November 20 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo. 100% of proceeds benefit Great Plains Food Bank. See event photos and special updates by following RDO Caters Taters on Facebook and Instagram .






Thank You to Our Sponsors – Valley® Irrigation


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RDO Caters Taters for Charity is possible because of goods, services, and dollars donated by generous companies that support the event year after year. We’re pleased to highlight this year’s Hot Potato sponsors with special features here on the blog. Read to find out more about one of our Dining Room sponsors, Valley® Irrigation, including how the company’s mission aligns with that of this year’s benefiting charity, Great Plains Food Bank. Valley Irrigation On more than 35 types of crops and approximately 25 million acres in 90 countries worldwide – in a nutshell, that’s where Valley Irrigation products are used. The company provides center pivot and linear irrigation equipment and remote management solutions used on farms around the globe, including in Minnesota and North Dakota. Go for a drive through the F-M area’s rural communities and, especially to the east, there’s a good chance of spotting a Valley Irrigation pivot in a farm field. In addition to providing equipment to irrigate crops, Valley Irrigation also offers smart irrigation solutions that help growers manage their machines, keeping them connected to the fields from anywhere in the world via smartphone, tablet, or desktop computer. Valley Irrigation offers its irrigation solutions through its network of dealers; one of those dealers in Minnesota and North Dakota is MVI, a company under the R.D. Offutt Company umbrella. Valley Irrigation has worked closely with R.D. Offutt Company on many projects in the past and chose to sponsor RDO Caters Taters this year for the second consecutive year. Feeding the World This year, sponsoring RDO Caters Taters has a little extra meaning for Valley Irrigation, a division of Valmont Industries, because of the benefiting charity, Great Plains Food Bank. “One of the things on which Valley Irrigation prides itself is our role in feeding the world,” Rich Panowicz, Vice President, North American Sales, said. Because Valley Irrigation pivots and technology are designed to help growers do more with less and irrigate a variety of crops, the company’s mission is similar to Great Plains Food Bank’s, wanting to do its part to ensure the availability of quality, nutritious food for everyone. “We’re 10,000 employees proudly working to feed 7.6 billion people,” he added. Not only does Great Plains Food Bank’s mission tie in with a focus of Valley Irrigation, Panowicz says the partnership between R.D. Offutt Company and Valley Irrigation is important, and he is proud of the role Valley plays in sponsoring the RDO Caters Taters event. Visit the Valley Irrigation websiteto learn more about the company, and the products and solutions it offers growers around the world.






The Impact of RDO Caters Taters – Ronald McDonald House Charities


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Ten years ago, RDO Caters Taters for Charity partnered with Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) in Fargo. While the event had a significant impact on RMHC then, both groups have continued to see the lasting benefits of the partnership throughout the decade – and it goes beyond the dollars raised. Jill Christopher, Executive Director of RMHC in Fargo, discussed a few of the ways her team continues to be impacted by RDO Caters Taters and how they’re committed to paying it forward. Fulfilling Needs Earlier this year, RMHC in Fargo saw the opening of its new house near the new Sanford hospital in South Fargo. The expanded facility was designed to provide much-needed space for the growing number of families seeking support of RMHC, as well as improve the experience those families have while there. One might assume the dollars raised at RDO Caters Taters in 2007 were among the first put towards this project, however, the new facility wasn’t yet in the works when RMHC was the event’s charitable partner. “At the time, we needed funds to operate the two existing houses we had,” Jill explains. “And, at the time, the funds from RDO Caters Taters filled that need and helped us further our mission to support families whose children are receiving medical care in the Fargo-Moorhead area.” More Than Money While the dollars raised may not have directly went towards the new facility, Jill strongly believes the relationships built with R.D. Offutt Company and the exposure of being an RDO Caters Taters partner played a role in the new building coming to life ten years later. “We received a grant from the Offutt Family Foundation that was put directly towards the new facility,” she said. “Because of our partnership on the event and relationships built with members of RDO, we were fortunate to be nominated and selected for that grant to help us build the new house.” The relationships extended to individual RDO team members who have become involved with RMHC on their own. She also says public awareness of RMHC is something that continues to be raised, even ten years after partnering with the event. “Every year, it seems we continue to be talked about in conjunction with the event,” she said. “Our name gets brought up as a previous partner and it keeps us top-of-mind in the community for donations and volunteering.” Paying it Forward Throughout the years, RMHC staff has continued to support RDO Caters Taters, attending the event and ordering lunches to-go through take out. Jill explained it’s more than showing appreciation to RDO for selecting RMHC as the benefiting charity ten years ago. It’s their way of supporting other charities in the community. “It’s fun to see your friends doing well!” she said with a big smile. “We want to see other charities succeed so we come out and support however we can. We’re always excited for the ones who are chosen to be part of the event each year.” Jill had one final thing to say about her team’s efforts to support RDO Caters Taters each year. “I mean, it’s delicious!” she said with a laugh. “Who doesn’t want a reason to enjoy a big baked potato with all the goodies on it?” ----- Join us for RDO Caters Taters for Charity, Tuesday, November 20 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo. 100% of proceeds benefit Great Plains Food Bank. See event photos and special updates by following RDO Caters Taters on Facebook and Instagram .






Great Plains Food Bank by the Numbers

Since 2000, RDO Caters Taters for Charity has been bringing together members of the Fargo-Moorhead community to enjoy camaraderie, give back to a local charity, and, most importantly, fill their bellies with a delicious baked potato lunch. It’s hard to imagine but there are people in the community who don’t get the opportunity to eat lunch – not just a baked potato lunch at RDO Caters Taters, but any lunch at all. That’s why RDO Caters Taters is thrilled to partner with Great Plains Food Bank for this year’s event. Great Plains Food Bank is the largest hunger-relief organization in North Dakota and serves as its only food bank. The mission is to end hunger in North Dakota and western Minnesota. Get a sneak peek into what makes this year’s charitable partner so important to the F-M community. Here are 10 quick numbers that tell the story of the Great Plains Food Bank. 1. 11 million The number of meals provided by Great Plains Food Bank, annually 2. 97,000-plus The number of people Great Plains Food Bank helps feed each year 3. 36% and 12% Of those 97,000 people struggling with hunger each year, the percentage of children and seniors, respectively, Great Plains Food Bank helps feed 4. 52 The number of semi-loads of food the Great Plains Food Bank warehouse can hold at a time 5. 335 The number of feeding sites Great Plains Food Bank operates or supplies in North Dakota and Clay County, MN 6. 3 The number of meals provided by Great Plains Food Bank for every $1 donated 7. 500,000 The number of miles Great Plains Food Bank’s refrigerated trucks travel each year transporting food across the state 8. 29% and 18% The percentages of adult clients who report not eating for an entire day at times and their children who sometimes miss meals 9. 27% The percentage of food produced in the U.S. that never reaches a dinner table 10. 5,500 The number of volunteers who help at the Great Plains Food Bank each year ----- Join us for RDO Caters Taters for Charity, Tuesday, November 20 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo. 100% of proceeds benefit Great Plains Food Bank. See event photos and special updates by following RDO Caters Taters on Facebook and Instagram .






RDO Caters Taters: Then and Now


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You probably know RDO Caters Taters for Charity has been serving up spuds annually since 2000. It’s likely you’re aware 100% of all dollars raised by the event go directly to the benefiting charity. But you may not realize there’s a lot about RDO Caters Taters that has changed throughout the years. Here are five major ways the event has grown and evolved into the RDO Caters Taters we all know today. 1. Food and Funds In the past, RDO Caters Taters was a smaller event than it is today, serving roughly 700 people in its first year and raising a few thousand dollars for the charitable partner, American Cancer Society. Today, the event has grown into a first-class luncheon and fundraiser event. Last year, approximately 2,900 people were served and more than $80,000 was raised for the benefiting charity, CCRI, Inc. 2. Committee Members In the past, the RDO Caters Taters committee was made up of just a handful of R.D. Offutt Company team members who planned and coordinated the event. Today, more than 30 team members make up the RDO Caters Taters committee. The group is just as dedicated as ever to executing a first-rate event for the community and charitable partner. 3. Take Out Transformation In the past, Take Out ordering was a manual process. Orders were placed via phone call or mailed in, then the committee handwrote order details on the take-out container labels. This was a time-intensive process even back then, when the majority of guests were still dining in for lunch. Today, all Take Out ordering is done online (with the exception of event day walk-ins). About seven years ago, the ordering process was moved online, and labels printed prior to the event. Now that more than half of the potatoes enjoyed at RDO Caters Taters are taken to-go, the new process is much more efficient. 4. Tater Toppings In the past, chili and broccoli cheese were the two potato toppings available. Today, numerous toppings are offered to guests, including bacon, butter, cheese, salsa, sour cream, and last year’s brand-new topping, buffalo chicken, which came from the Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo staff. The RDO Caters Taters committee enjoys providing guests with new options to top their taters throughout the years and is grateful to partners who donate these tasty toppings. 5. Onsite Extras In the past, RDO Caters Taters was exclusively a luncheon. Today, the event features additional ways to support the charity, including a raffle and bagged potato sales. It also includes more fun for guests, like door prizes and a photo booth for sharing event photos on social media with the hashtag #RDOCatersTaters. While RDO Caters Taters has evolved and grown throughout the years, the event’s roots remain unchanged: bring together community members for lunch and make an impact on a local charity. ----- Join us for RDO Caters Taters for Charity, Tuesday, November 20 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Delta Hotels by Marriott Fargo. 100% of proceeds benefit Great Plains Food Bank. See event photos and special updates by following RDO Caters Taters on Facebook and Instagram .