April 2019 eNews


Community Food Drive—Critical Need!

Attention Snowbirds! Don’t throw away your food before you head up north. Repurpose it by donating it to The Food Bank of Manatee!

You can help The Food Bank of Manatee provide hunger-relief to those in need by hosting a food drive and collecting non-perishable foods. To have a yellow donation barrel dropped off at your school, business, faith or civic organization, gym, or neighborhood clubhouse, call 941-747-FOOD (3663) or email info@foodbankofmanatee.org.  Click here for a downloadable food drive kit to help promote your food drive.

Almost 60,000 men, women, and children living in Manatee County are food-insecure. The Food Bank of Manatee, the largest hunger-relief organization in Manatee, provides more than 4 million pounds of food annually to 100 partner pantries, soup kitchens, and agencies for distribution to the public.

Winn-Dixie Community Bag Program

We are excited to announce that Winn-Dixie has selected The Food Bank of Manatee to be a part of the Community Bag Program, making it easy for customers to contribute to the food bank while supporting the environment.

For the entire month of April, The Food Bank of Manatee will receive a $1 donation each time a shopper purchases a reusable Community Bag at the Winn-Dixie located at 5802 14th Street West, Bradenton, FL 3420. You can find the two colorful reusable Community Bags with the Giving Tag on the reusable bag rack at the store. The key is to look for the bags with a tag that features a blue heart with $1 in it.

This is a great way to raise awareness, support the environment and fundraise for our cause.

Grow Financial Free Community Shred Day & Food Drive

Join Grow Financial for their annual Free Community Shred Day & Food Drive on Saturday, April 27th from 9am to noon. Together with ShredQuick, they will be offering this free shredding service at two locations in Manatee County: Lakewood Ranch Town Hall, 8175 Lakewood Ranch Boulevard, Lakewood Ranch, FL 34202 and Grow Financial Lakewood Ranch Branch, 11008 Arcade Place, Lakewood Ranch, FL 34211.

Anyone who takes advantage of this free service is encouraged to bring non-perishable, non-glass food items to donate to The Food Bank of Manatee at either locations.

2019 Tropical Nights Hot Havana Nights

The night was HOT, HOT, HOT at Grove Ballroom! Guests enjoyed a delightful dinner while Sarah Glass & Joshua David, from Sara Dance Center, entertained them with salsa dancing to Latin tunes performed by Tropical Avenue. The Cool Today Club Cuba was a popular spot for guests to enjoy a refreshing Cuba Libre. The atmosphere was exciting and our guests were very engaged.

Meals on Wheels PLUS President & CEO Maribeth Phillips and Board Member Jaime DiDomenico shared our mission with attendees and thanked our supporters. At the end of the fundraising session of the night, Board Chair Bambi Forristall showed a video of Meals on Wheels PLUS at work, which left many in the audience in tears.

Our auctioneer, Jason Alpert, was electric and created several exciting bidding wars, helping to raise our live auction revenue and bid from the heart donations. Tropical Nights was not only a fun filled evening for our guests to enjoy; we raised approximately $140,000 to FEED MANATEE!

Meals on Wheels PLUS is already hard at work preparing for Tropical Nights 2020… Save the date for Saturday, March 28, 2020!

Click here to see pictures of Tropical Nights.
Photo Credit: Cliff Roles

March for Meals

During the last week of March, Meals on Wheels PLUS of Manatee participated in March for Meals Community Champions Week, a community-based initiative across the network of Meals on Wheels America members to drive awareness for home-bound seniors! Local officials joined volunteer drivers in delivering meals to homebound seniors.

On behalf of the seniors we serve in Manatee County, we would like to thank Councilman Gene Gallo, Gary Tibbetts, special assistant to United States Congressman Vern Buchanan, Palmetto Chief of Police Scott Tyler, County Commissioner Betsy Benac, and Bradenton Police Chief Melanie Bevan for taking the time to participate in the 17th annual March for Meals. We are grateful for you and all of our Meals on Wheels PLUS Champions!

Click here to see pictures of March for Meals Champions Week 2019.

3rd Annual Beer Belly 5K

On Saturday, March 23rd, runners participated in a fun 5K race whose course led them through the Lakewood Ranch community, scattered with craft beer stops, and ended with a party including beer trucks, food, and prizes. Proceeds from the race benefited Meals on Wheels PLUS and participants were encouraged to donate non-perishables to The Food Bank of Manatee. Thank you Beer Belly runners! Click here to see pictures from Beer Belly 2019.