Market House owner Brett Boyd said he loves giving back to the com­munity by pro­viding produce, dairy and baked goods to local fundraisers and char­ities. Giving back is a family legacy, he said, ever since the local grocery company was founded 75 years ago.
“My great grand­father started the company and giving back to the com­munity was huge for him, and he passed that down as a Market House tra­dition,” Boyd said. “Hope­fully we’ll be doing it for another 75 years. When you call the store, if you’re a non­profit group or charity you can let us know and we’ll help you.”
Every month, local char­ities and fundraising groups mail letters to Market House requesting assis­tance, and Boyd reviews them with Market House employee Jan Hutchin. Boyd said he rarely says “no.”
“Last year we con­tributed to 12 dif­ferent char­ities, including Sal­vation Army, the Humane Society, and the Hospice of Hillsdale County,” Boyd said. “We have a lot of groups we con­tribute to every month. We donate to the local food banks and Sal­vation Army on a weekly basis, King’s Kup­board in par­ticular. We recently gave a large donation to them.”
Hutchin clar­ified that Market House does not give mon­etary dona­tions, but gives directly from Market House stock.
“If a group is doing an event for the benefit of a member of the com­munity, like a spaghetti dinner, we’ll provide the sauce and spaghetti,” Hutchin said. “We do fundraisers for them too: we’ve had churches out here selling candy bars for mission trips, and a family Relay for Life team holds a bake sale on Good Friday here every year.”
A local 4‑H group hosts a hot dog sale at Market House every year, and Hutchin said Market House pro­vides the condi­ments, cups, and hot dogs for a low cost.
Boyd’s char­i­table spirit appears to have per­meated his entire business: Market House does not make a profit from helping local char­ities and fundraising groups, so even though the store does not always provide its inventory to fundraisers for free, it is still con­sidered a donation. Some­times local res­i­dents will set up a fundraiser for another sick res­ident in need of medical funds, and Market House often assists with those fundraisers.
“Because of the needs of the com­munity we’ve tried to doubly support them because they support us,” Hutchin said. “We want them to make money, so it’s more of a donation from us.”
King’s Kup­board Director Kristin Lucas said she picks up produce, dairy and baked goods from Market House two to three times a week. She said this makes a big impact since King’s Kup­board is open only on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.
“I don’t think it’s a large per­centage of our inventory, but it’s produce and we like people to have healthy food and it’s fresh,” Lucas said. “Some of our other food is a little more limited, and people get a certain number of items based on the number of people in their fam­ilies.”
Lucas said King’s Kup­board also buys food from Market House once a month, which varies depending on the food pantry’s budget, which is dependent on char­i­table dona­tions from the com­munity. But Lucas said the com­munity, like Market House, is con­sis­tently gen­erous.
“Checks come in all the time from all over the com­munity,” Lucas said. “We usually do a mailing once a year and our church members help, but we have a small church so it’s really a whole com­munity effort.”

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Kate Patrick
Since she sold her soul to journalism, history major and Associate Editor Kate Patrick has covered business, the tech industry, city council, and city news in Washington, D.C.; Dayton, Ohio; Rockford, Illinois; and Hillsdale, Michigan. She creates extensive rock playlists and investigates abandoned buildings in her spare time. email: | twitter: @katepatrick_