Baltimore Orioles once again a partner with Mayors’ Feed the Hungry Program for Thanksgiving

Donations of non-perishable food items being collected at Ed Smith Stadium; volunteers needed to help sort the donations on Nov. 17

Image from the Mayors’ Feed the Hungry website

The Baltimore Orioles and the Mayors’ Feed the Hungry Program are teaming up again this year to collect and distribute food to help people in need in Sarasota, the Major League Baseball team has announced.

As of Nov. 6, the Orioles have begun collecting non-perishable food items at Ed Smith Stadium, a news release says. The team will host the charity’s Thanksgiving Sorting Day at the ballpark on Friday, Nov. 17, the release adds.

Non-perishable food items may be dropped off at the stadium, located at 2700 12th St. in Sarasota, on weekdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., the release notes. The collection station is inside Café 54 on Euclid Avenue.

The stadium will be closed on Friday, Nov. 10, in observance of Veterans Day, the release points out.

Additionally, volunteers are needed on Nov. 17 to sort food collected from locations throughout the community, the release adds. That effort will take place in the ballpark’s East Lot between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Volunteers do not need to sign up in advance, the release emphasizes.

“Partnering with the Mayors’ Feed the Hungry Program has become an important tradition for our organization, which has a long-standing commitment to fighting hunger, not just locally in Sarasota but also regionally throughout the Mid-Atlantic and internationally through a variety of partnerships,” said David Rovine, vice president of the Orioles-Sarasota, in the release. “Together, we can help improve the lives of families in need throughout the Sarasota area.”

Since 1987, the Mayors’ Feed the Hungry Program —a nonprofit organization — has collected and distributed more than 200 tons of food and more than $3.5 million in food gift cards to those in need in Sarasota and Manatee counties, the release explains. The organization’s Thanksgiving food drive typically collects more than 46 tons of non-perishable food items, the release adds. The food is distributed through charitable groups, religious institutions and service agencies. Mayors’ Feed the Hungry also uses cash donations to distribute the food gift cards, the release points out.

“Mayors’ Feed the Hungry is thrilled to team up with the Orioles again this year,” said Joel Swallow, chair of the Mayors’ Feed the Hungry program, in the release. “The Orioles very graciously open their Sarasota home to host our annual food drive, demonstrating their commitment to giving back to the community.”

The program is endorsed by the mayors of Sarasota, Bradenton, Palmetto, Venice, Longboat Key, Holmes Beach, Bradenton Beach, Anna Maria, and North Port, as well as the chairs of the Sarasota County and Manatee County commissions. More information may be found at www.mayorsfeedthehungry.org.

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