811 23rd Avenue E., Bradenton, FL 34208 (941) 747-4655

April 2023 News Updates


We proudly invite you to join us for the inaugural “Drive Away Hunger” Golf Classic benefiting Meals on Wheels PLUS of Manatee. Tee it up and show support for the critical work of Meals on Wheels PLUS of Manatee! Your support will help children, families, and seniors in need, right here in our community. Please help us #FEEDMANATEE!

The “Drive Away Hunger” Golf Classic will be held the morning of Saturday, June 10, 2023, at Legacy Golf Club in Lakewood Ranch.

This scramble tournament will include green fees, cart, driving range, as well as food and beverages. In addition, there are chances to win prizes including winning team, hole-in-one, and other great contests. Join us and grip it and rip it for a great cause.

Sponsorship opportunities available. Click here for more information.


The 29th Annual Tropical Nights Goes Hollywood event, benefiting Meals on Wheels PLUS of Manatee, was a tremendous success. The event, held on Saturday, March 25, 2023, raised over $250,000 to support the programs and mission of Meals on Wheels PLUS of Manatee.

The evening hosted by Jason Alpert, Auctioneer Extraordinaire, featured a silent and live auction, paddle raise, amazing entertainment including music from Tropical Ave, and excellent food and drinks! The event also featured special appearances from Bob Harrigan of ABC-7, Lady Gaga impersonator Silvia Day, as well as James Bond 007, impersonator Tim Steger.

We appreciate all the sponsors, donors, and staff that made this year’s event so memorable. Save the date for the event next year and make plans now to join us for Tropical Nights: A Pirate’s Life on Saturday, March 23, 2024.


Without the generous contributions from members of our Board of Directors, Tropical Nights Goes Hollywood would not have been the success that it was. Not only did members of the board make generous donations totaling $50,000 for the Bid From The Heart donation match, but they also donated great auction packages valued at nearly $14,000 that were part of our live and silent auctions. Our board members are volunteers who donate their time and expertise to advance our mission throughout Manatee County. Click here for more information about our board members.


We honored to voted the winner of the 2023 Readers’ Choice Best Nonprofit/Charity Organization. An award like this validates the critical work Meals on Wheels PLUS of Manatee is doing in the local community. We would not be recognized for this award without our dedicated staff and volunteers, our board members, our sponsors, and our donors. We look forward to continuing our mission to #FeedManatee.


During the month of March we celebrated Meals on Wheels PLUS and the seniors we serve with March for Meals. March for Meals provided a chance for public officials in our community to help raise public awareness for the nutritional and social needs of seniors through media attention. Local elected officials and community leaders participated in our Home-delivered Meals program by delivering meals to our clients and bringing awareness to our mission. We want to thank all who participated!

“We are grateful for the many supporters of our mission who make our work possible every day,” said Maribeth Phillips, President & CEO of Meals on Wheels PLUS of Manatee. “Our PLUS programs are critical, life-saving efforts benefiting thousands in need in Manatee County and having the leaders of our community continually validate the importance of this work means so much,” she added.

Every day, we are meeting the immediate needs of our clients by providing nutrition and compassion. Husband and wife, Kennard and Beaner, are clients that found the service of Meals on Wheels PLUS of Manatee outstanding at a critical time in their lives. “Meals on Wheels PLUS was the most professional, the friendliest, the most compassionate, and and the most understanding of any organization,” Kennard said.

If you would like to support our Home-delivered Meals clients you can volunteer or donate.


The Food Bank of Manatee, a PLUS program of Meals on Wheels PLUS of Manatee, has been providing vital nutrition and caring, supportive services in Myakka City, Florida since two hurricanes impacted the area last fall. Through collaborations with United Way Suncoast and Myakka Family Worship Center, The Food Bank of Manatee has been able to distribute snack bags, fresh produce, and critical household and food items to families in need. With many wells damaged and homes flooded, getting households back up and running after the storm took many, many weeks and some families are still not back to 100%.

The Food Bank of Manatee provided immediate relief to Myakka with over 140,000 pounds of food as well as critical cleaning supplies and essential water distributions beginning two days after the first hurricane hit. The Food Bank of Manatee completed eight on-site distributions immediately following Hurricane Ian. The support has continued with almost 2,000 nutritious snacks bags distributed through Myakka Elementary School and distribution of fresh produce totaling nearly 4,000 pounds to 600 families. These efforts will continue through June 2023 and beginning this month we will add our Food 4 Families distribution to 150 families monthly and continue this program through June 2023 as well. For information on our critically-needed food items list that help feed those in need in our community, please click here.


Volunteering is not limited to adults. Recently, the Manatee PAL Thunder, a traveling basketball team of 7th graders, packed over 350 food/snack bags for food-insecure kids at Myakka Elementary School. These 12-13 year olds, who play in the Police Athletic League, had just finished their first tournament and their coach wanted the kids to see a different side of life. “These kids are able to play in tournaments from Orlando to Port Charlotte, and I wanted them to see that there are less privileged people in the community who need our help,” Coach CG said. If you are inspired by the story of these young athletes and would like to volunteer, please click here.


The clients of Friendship Dining enjoyed discovering their inner artist with a new twist on fun. Painting with a Twist in Bradenton visited our Friendship Dining Center and gave them the Painting with a Twist experience they are known for. It’s fun, simple, and no creative or artistic skills are needed. The clients connected with each other, enjoyed their favorite snacks, and had a day of laughs. Oh, and they also learned how to paint! Each client made their own painting of a beautiful “Moonlight” as taught by the instructor. As an added bonus, they were able to take the keepsake home to remind them of the day.


It’s a bright day at Daybreak Adult Day Center, a PLUS program of Meals on Wheels PLUS of Manatee, where record-breaking attendance has the staff excited and energized! In March of 2020, the Center closed due to the impacts of the global pandemic with concerns over keeping older, vulnerable clients safe. Reopening in December of 2021, the staff have been working hard to rebuild attendance at the program. Beginning in April, Daybreak marks the enrollment of the 60th client in this important day-program that allows seniors to be looked after and cared for while their caretakers work or tend to other responsibilities.

“We believe in the value of this program and to see the number of people utilizing our amazing Center and programming is really tremendous,” said Maribeth Phillips, President & CEO of Meals on Wheels PLUS of Manatee. “This program is truly life-changing for caregivers and clients,” she added.

Daybreak Adult Day Center is the only licensed adult day center in Manatee County. If you or someone you know is interested in attending Daybreak Adult Day Center, click here.

Walmart recently launched Walmart Spark Good Round Up where customers can round up their purchases to the nearest dollar and donate the change to their Meals on Wheels PLUS of Manatee. We would love for you to choose us as your charity of choice for the round-ups in order to receive donations every time you shop on Walmart.com. Click here to learn more.

Thank you for considering Meals on Wheels PLUS of Manatee for Walmart Spark Good Round Up! Supporting us every time you shop at Walmart will help #FeedManatee. Donating spare change by automatically rounding up your orders to the nearest dollar at checkout may not seem like a large contribution, but those pennies add up in making a difference for local, food-insecure families.