Rock the Run 5K is Coming – Register Now!

Even though it’s early January there’s nothing better than future planning all the spring and outdoor related events to come once the frigid weather finally gives way to the earth springing back to life.

And since we’re all already day-dreaming about spring, now’s a perfect time to invite you to plan to join us for our 4th annual Rock the Run 5K in April!

RTR Pirate Princess

The initial 5K was introduced as an event during our 6oth Anniversary Diamond Celebration year in 2015. But it continues today as a way to raise money and awareness about the work we do to combat hunger and homelessness in Hagerstown while also giving friends in the community the chance to get outside and have some fun while supporting this ministry.

Rock the Run will take place on April 28th, 2018, at Fairgrounds Park in Hagerstown. Registration is already open and is only $20 until February 27th. Go to to register today.

Rock the Run 5K offers a fun course that begins and ends at Fairgrounds Park but also ventures into the beautiful, historic neighborhoods surrounding the park. It’s a great race for avid runners and also those who are just starting out or just want to be a part of the fun.

For those who are serious about running or are training, we are teaming up with Racine MultiSports again this year to provide a professional, quality race experience complete with chips to track your time and progress. And awards will be given to those top finishers. Learn more about Racine MultiSports by visiting

But for those who just want to come out, have some healthy fun and support a great cause, we’ve added something interesting for you this year – a pirates vs princess theme! This year we’re having some fun by encouraging participants to dress up in costumes and accessories (remember to be comfortable enough to run/walk the course) as either a pirate or any form of princess/royal.

In addition to the costumes, we’ll be having all sorts of fun additions to the race this year including a competition between the pirates and princesses for a food drive. In past years we’ve had a drop box at the race where any participant could drop off food donations for our pantry and food services. This year we’re making it a competition between pirates and princesses to see which side can bring in the most food donations!

To participate in Rock the Run you do not have to dress up like a pirate or a princess. This is totally optional and just for some fun. If you’re coming to run the race while supporting a good cause then we definitely appreciate it and hope that you’ll register today. If you’re looking for some random good fun then grab that eyepatch or a crown and register today too! We want as many people in the community joining us in this fun event and running/walking to help us end hunger and homelessness in Hagerstown.

To learn more about Rock the Run: Pirates vs Princess, and to go ahead and register, go to And don’t forget to spread the word to all your friends, family, Sunday School class, civic club, coworkers, and more!

See you in April!


Merry Christmas!

We hope each of you have a wonderful day full of laughter, delicious food and precious memories. Enjoy your day celebrating with all your loved ones.

Merry Christmas 9

If you, or someone you know, is looking for a place to celebrate then join us for a free Christmas lunch at 1:15pm. There will be plenty of mouthwatering food and tons of sweet treats! And come back at 7pm for a Christmas evening service and free dinner as well! All of our meals are free for anyone and everyone! We don’t want anyone to be alone or hungry on Christmas so please make plans to celebrate with your Hope Center family!

The Christmas meals are served in our dining room located in our main building on Prospect St. Entrance to the building is located on our central parking lot off of Church Street between Prospect and Walnut Streets. There is plenty of free parking available in our central lot.

For more information about the location of The Hope Center go to

Not Your Average Birthday Girl

We live in a pretty generous area. In fact, the greater Hagerstown region has been so generous and faithful in their support of our ministry that we have never used any government tax money to fund any of our programs or services! Our facilities have remained open and operating 24 hours a day, 7 days a week since 1955 thanks to people in the community who have shopped in our Thrift Stores, donated funds, gave gently used items and kept our pantry fully stocked.

So we know all about the great people who give so much to our ministry to make sure others who are less fortunate have what they need to help meet their needs.

But every once in a while we are taken aback by the generosity of others.

dsc_0015-2Let us introduce to you a pint-sized hero in our community: Melanie. Melanie may look like just another 7 year old but Melanie did something that most kids would not do for their birthday – she asked her family and friends to donate non-perishable food to The Hope Center. Her birthday request brought in 118 pounds of food for our pantry!

Melanie’s parents are helping her understand that there are people in her own community who are in need and struggling with hunger and homelessness. Children are never too young to teach the importance of helping others and giving to the less fortunate.

Melanie and her mom were given a tour of the kitchen and dining room where the food will be used to feed those who come for help.

Thank you, Melanie, for your generous birthday donation! We are so thankful for your heart to help others and we hope you help to inspire other young people to follow your lead.

If you would like to join Melanie in donating food or other items to The Hope Center then call 301.739.1165 or email to learn more.

If you are in need of assistance then contact us immediately. We’re here to help so give us a call!

Hundreds Help Provide Haircuts for the Homeless

Thank you Hagerstown!

In February, Hair Cuttery locations offered their generous Share-A-Haircut promotion in our community. For two days, anyone who received a haircut at a participating Hair Cuttery location in Hagerstown helped to provide a free haircut for the homeless and those struggling in this economy.

Hair Cuttery coupons Feb 2014 3

We were so happy to hear that the Share-A-Haircut was a huge success! Hair Cuttery has provided us with hundreds of coupons for men, women, teens and kids to receive complimentary haircuts at local Hair Cuttery shops.

Thank you for spreading the word, visiting a Hair Cuttery, and helping to provide a free haircut to the homeless and lower income families. This may sound like a silly thing, but a fresh haircut can be the start of bigger and better things for people who are struggling to get back on their feet.

The Share-A-Haircut program is such a valuable resource for our community. We are thankful that Hair Cuttery is so generous and thoughtful.

If you know of any homeless men, women or children, please contact our office immediately. We want to give everyone the opportunity for a fresh haircut and a new outlook on life! For more info please call 301.739.1165 or email us at

And when you need a haircut, don’t forget to visit a local Hair Cuttery. There are three convenient locations in Hagerstown. Go to to find a location near you.

Celebrate National Coffee Day!

Coffee is probably the most important part of everyone’s breakfast routine. We all need a good cup of joe to jolt the brain awake and prepare us for the stresses and happiness of each new day.

coffee2On September 29th, America is celebrating our most beloved hot beverage! Stores and businesses across the country are offering free cups of coffee or special coupons to celebrate the day.

A coffee lover comes in many different shapes & sizes. We hail from the Northeast to the Southwest and even places like Alaska & Hawaii. Coffee lovers come from all social backgrounds and are all ages. Pretty much, everyone is a coffee lover.

As you enjoy your morning brew or celebrate with an afternoon latte, remember that not everyone has the opportunity to enjoy a hot cup of coffee each day. There are people who have fallen on hard times and don’t have the resources to drink a cup of coffee each day.

Join us in helping to restore hope to these people by starting with a cup of coffee. It may sound silly, but a cup of joe can help break down barriers and be the first step to building a relationship that could change a life forever!

At The Hope Center, we go through a lot of coffee. From our residents, to our transient guests, to our daily meal guests, to our weekly Koffee Klatch ladies group, there is a lot of coffee consumed. And all that coffee consumption can quickly add up.

Our pantry runs low on essentials, like coffee & sugar, quite often. So why not help celebrate National Coffee Day by grabbing a cup for yourself and a container of coffee for those in need?

This weekend as you go to your favorite grocery store, pick up an extra can or jug of coffee for The Hope Center. Something as small as a can of coffee can go along way. By supplying us with coffee, you allow us to use our resources for other programs & ministries to help reach people in need for Christ.

Money that would be spent purchasing coffee & sugar can go towards helping men break from their addictions that have destroyed their lives. This money can go towards providing comfortable beds and warm blankets for the homeless during the cold winter months. There are so many ways that your coffee donation can actually help make a difference in our city.

But the most important way that your coffee donation can make a difference is that someone who feels lost, desperate and alone knows that there are caring, loving people in this world and there is a great, loving and compassionate God who wants the best for them.

Restoring hope and changing lives is too big for humans. It’s a God-sized task. He just asks that we show His love so He can rescue lives.

And love can come in all forms, even a cup of coffee.

If you would like to donate coffee or get involved on a regular basis at The Hope Center, please call 301.739.1165 or email

To drop off coffee & sugar donations, please stop by our Administrative Office, Monday – Friday, 8:30am – 4:30pm. If you need to arrange another time, please call us at 301.739.1165.

If your church, Sunday School class, youth group, civic organization, Boy/Girl Scout troop, business or any other group would like to host a Coffee & Sugar Drive, please contact us for details. This is a wonderful way for the community to pull together to help make a difference.

Thank you for caring & sharing! Your support helps tremendously!

For more info on The Hope Center, please go to

A Letter from our Executive Director

Sonny Shank Executive DirectorAs I write this letter it is winter, cold and blustery. As I look out my office window to the street below, I see one lonely man. All his worldly possessions are in a small suitcase and a plastic bag. He slowly paces around, trying to stay warm – soaking up what little warmth the sun is giving on this winter day. He will soon move on and another will take his place.

And so it goes, day after day. Idleness, addictions, hopelessness permeate the lives of these men. But just across the street from where the man paces is a sign – a sign of hope. It says, “Jesus Saves!”

I often wonder why God allows winter. I have to come to the conclusion that it is to remind us of the hopelessness of our lives – the coldness and darkness of our lives – and the bleakness of our lives without Christ. It is because of the hopelessness of winter in our lives that Jesus Christ came to earth to die on a cross, to be buried, and then to be raised from the dead by the mighty power of God! And it is during this Easter season that we are reminded of the newness of life that only Jesus can give! If you are living in the winter of your life, Jesus Christ wants to give you hope for life eternal with Him!

This year marks the 58th year of ministry here at The Hope Center at Hagerstown Rescue Mission. Thank you for your support throughout the years which makes it possible for us to meet the needs of the least, the last and the lost of our community. Our founder, Dr. Jimmy Resh, fondly called this ministry “the old lighthouse” and for 58 years, because of caring people who pray for us, financially support us, and give of their time and talents, “the old lighthouse” continues to make a difference in the lives of thousands of people – calling them out of the darkness into the light of the marvelous Gospel of Jesus Christ!

Thanks to your support, many men have entered this building of hope and have taken possession of the hope that is offered here. Just this past year Howard passed through the doors of The Hope Center, despondent over the loss of his wife. Suicidal, having lost all hope. Howard once again experienced the love of the Lord Jesus Christ and won the victory over depression.

Frank had lost everything of value to him – his job, his wife, his family – because of alcohol. Today he has hope and is walking in victory because he came face to face with the only One who gives lasting hope – the Lord Jesus Christ.

Kevin lived a life of negativity, addiction and self-centeredness. However when Kevin heard the message of hope through Christ, he dropped the negativism, the addictions,  and the self-centereredness and gave himself to Jesus.

Thank you for standing with us to share the message of hope to men, women and kids. May our great God bless you and your family this Easter season!


Sonny Shank

Local Girl Scouts Give Hope

The Girl Scouts from Troop 40002 visited The Hope Center on November 17th and brought with them blankets that the girls had made themselves to donate to our shelter.


While here, the girls and their leaders met some of the men who are enrolled in our 13-month program.  The girls learned about our emergency shelter as well as our long-term program.

We’re so thankful that these young ladies have a heart to help their neighbors in need. And it’s very important that children are aware of the needs of others and learn about ways to help give back to their community.

If you would like information on how you can get involved, just like the Girl Scouts, please call 301.739.1165 or email