When staff and volunteers arrived at Owen Oral and Implant Surgery on Monday, a line of nearly 30 people were waiting for them.
Monday kicked of the first of two free community clinic days at the dental office where people in need can get dental and chiropractic services as well as hair cuts. The event continues Tuesday from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m.
“The first ones in line this morning got here at 6:30 am,” said Karyn Owen, who’s husband Zachary owns and runs the dental practice. “We open the doors at 8 a.m.”
The dental services being offered are cleanings, fillings and extractions. Patients are welcome to undergo more than one service, however, because it is a first come, first served event, they will be asked to return to the line in between services.
This also includes chiropractic adjustments. For example, if someone wants an adjustment and a teeth cleaning, they would need to return to the line between the two.
There is no cost for the services and it is encouraged that those who’d like to be seen arrive early and be prepared for a wait.
Because the event is walk-in only and patient needs vary, it’s hard to predict how long the wait may be.
Owen said that those who attended Monday didn’t seem to have qualms about waiting in line.
“Everyone has been very gracious and very thankful,” she said.
Providers from Bridgeport Family Dental in Bridgeport and Owen Dental Care in Chadron, joined staff from Bluffs Chiropractic, The Bungalow Salon and Bluffs Dental in helping further the efforts.
“We’ve had over 30 volunteers that have been here in the office,” said Owen. “Everyone is so eager to serve.”
In addition to those who have hands-on roles in the clinic, a number of community members have also donated supplies.
The Owens were compelled by their faith to give back.
“We, as Christians, want to extend our hand to our community to show the love of Christ to those in need,” Owen said. “In doing so, we’re hoping to be a blessing to our community but we’re also being tremendously blessed.”