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Summer Meals

Children picking up meals at a neighborhood site.

Stay Fueled with Healthy Meals

The best way to fuel your mind is to fuel your body! Free meals are available to District 196 students through a variety of summer programs. More information will be available before the last day of school. Check back soon!

Meals are available to children, up to 18 years old, at no cost. Visitors do not need to show identification or proof of residency or sign up.

District 196 Free Summer Meals

Throughout the 2022 summer, meals are free, regardless of eligibility, for all District 196 students ages 18 and younger. The District 196 Food and Nutrition Services Department will follow practices consistent with health and safety guidelines. There are no eligibility requirements or identification required.

Meals will be available Monday-Friday, June 20 through August 12, 2022 at four school sites. There will be no meals the week of July 4 through 8. All meals must be consumed on site. Adult lunch is $5.

Free meals from are available Monday through Friday from 11 a.m.-12 p.m. at the following school locations:

  • Cedar Park Elementary School, 7500 Whitney Drive, Apple Valley

  • Dakota Ridge School,  4629 144 Street West, Apple Valley

  • Echo Park Elementary School, 14100 County Road 11, Burnsville

  • Thomas Lake Elementary School, 4350 Thomas Lake Road, Eagan 

IMPORTANT: All meals must be consumed onsite. Our free summer meal program is made possible through funding from the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture (USDA). Waivers that were in place during the COVID-19 pandemic that allowed meals to be taken off site are set to expire June 8, 2022. Now that the waivers are expiring, the USDA is once again requiring congregate dining for the all summer service programs.

Alimentos gratuitos para niños. Desde el 20 de junio hasta el 12 de agosto, 2022 

Lunes-Viernes (No se ofrecerán comidas del 4-8 de julio). Gratis para TODOS los niños. No hay requisites de elegibilidad de ingresos ¡SOLO PRESENTESE AL LUGAR! Las comidas gratuitas están disponibles de lunes a viernes de 11 am a 12 pm en las cuatro escuelas mencionadas anteriormente. Una comida para adultos cuesta $5.

CUNTADA BILAASHKA AH SAMARKA! Juun 20 - Agoosto 12, 2022

Isniinta-Jimacaha (Cuntada ma jirto Juulay 4-8). Waa bilaash DHAMAAN caruurta jira 18 ama ka yar. Dakhli looma eegaayo si uu ilmuhu cuntada u cuno. WAA INAAD ISKA TIMAADID! Cuntooyinka bilaashka ah ee laga bilaabo Isniinta ilaa Jimcaha 11 subaxnimo - 12 galabnimo ayaa laga heli karaa afarta dugsi ee kor ku xusan. Cuntada dadka waaweyn waa $5.

Families Encouraged to Apply for Educational Benefits

Though meals are free this school year, ALL FAMILIES are encouraged to complete an Educational Benefits Application, formerly the free and reduced-price meals application. Your children may qualify for free or reduced-price school meal benefits for school year 2022-23. If a household who meets the State/Federal guidelines and is approved, this provides students with school meal benefits. A new application must be submitted each year. Visit for more information. Español | Soomaali

The Educational Benefits Program is more than just an application for free and/or reduced price meals. Just one form ensures students funding continues for all students in District 196. Learn more about what this application supports.


Every Meal Logo

Every Meal providing free bags of food at every District 196 site

Free weekend bags of food will be available this summer for families at every District 196 school and three learning centers. The district has partnered with Every Meal, formerly The Sheridan Story, to provide grab-and-go bags of non-perishable food.

Beginning Monday, June 13, Every Meal will make a weekly delivery of food and place them in the secure vestibule at every site so families can come by and pick them up without a staff person needing to be present to distribute. Bags can be picked up Monday through Thursday.

Hours may vary at each site, and families are encouraged to check with the location that is most convenient for them for hours of when bags can be retrieved.

Open Door Summer Mobile Lunchbox

Free healthy meals are available this summer for all children through our partnership with The Open Door Pantry! Meals are available Monday through Friday at various times at several locations throughout the district. No registration or ID required. For more information, visit

  • Cedar Knolls Mobile Home Community (near the pool), 12:30-1 p.m.
    12571 Garland Avenue, Apple Valley
  • Cinnamon Ridge Park, 11:45 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.
    4598 Slater Road, Eagan
  • Eagan Place Apartments, 11-11:30 a.m.
    3575 Lexington Avenue South, Eagan
  • Emerald Hills, 11-11:30 a.m.
    8555 Bacardi Avenue, Inver Grove Heights
  • Rosemount Greens, 12:30-1 p.m.
    3810 145th Street West, Rosemount
  • Rosemount Woods, 11:45 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.
    13925 Bunratty Avenue, Rosemount

The Open Door also hosts free community meals several times a month in Apple Valley, Burnsville, Inver Grove Heights and Lakeville. For complete details, times and locations, visit the Open Door Pantry's website.

MDE Summer Food Service Program

Find a Summer Food Service Program near you.

  • Download the Free Meals for Kids app provided by Hunger Impact Partners to your phone or device.
  • Call the 211 Hotline. From a cell phone – Twin Cities Metro Area: 651-291-0211, Greater Minnesota: 1-800-543-7709, TTY: 651-291-8440.
  • Call the Minnesota Food HelpLine at 1-888-711-1151, available from Monday through Friday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Central Time.
  • Text USDA to texting service. Text Summer Meals to 914-342-7744. En español, text Verano to 914-342-7744.