This fall, Feeding America West Michigan Food Bank is embarking on a new campaign to defeat hunger in West Michigan: the Million Meal March. It begins on Saturday, September 29, with a 10-kilometer hike from the Food Bank to Belmont and back along the White Pine Trail. The Million Meal March is a multi-faceted fundraising push that runs from September through March. Feeding America West Michigan hopes to raise enough money to send an additional one million meals to local hunger relief agencies in the coming year. Food insecurity remains high in Michigan. Statewide, 1.87 million people worry about purchasing enough food to feed themselves and their families. In our service area, from Benton Harbor to the western Upper Peninsula, more than 354,000 people are food insecure; one-third of them under 18. “A community effort is essential if we’re going to meet this need,” said Ken Estelle, CEO of Feeding America West Michigan. “We encourage everyone who hikes on the 29th to raise $100 for the Food Bank.” Every dollar raised enables Feeding America West Michigan to distribute four meals to people in need. Those interested may register online at MillionMealMarch.org. In gratitude for their hospitality and to help preserve this indispensable West Michigan trail, five percent of the proceeds from the September 29 hike will be donated to Friends of the White Pine Trail. A host of West Michigan organizations are sponsoring the Million Meal March: Friends of the White Pine Trail, The Corner Bar, Reds on the River, Kent District Library, Wolverine Worldwide, Country Fresh, BISSELL, Meijer, Crowe Horwath LLP, ARC Michigan, MLive, GR Outdoor, Family Fare, D&W Fresh Market, Eastown Veterinary Clinic, Old Orchard Brands, Lighthouse Group, and Forest Hills Foods. The Million Meal March Trail Hike begins at Feeding America West Michigan in Comstock Park, 864 West River Center Drive. Local bands Hawks and Owls, Chinese Baseball and Suburban 5 & 10 will perform throughout the day, and The Corner Bar and Country Fresh are providing lunch and refreshments. The hike begins at 10 a.m. Participants can begin signing up, dropping off donations, and, for those who have raised $100, picking up their Million Meal March T-shirts at 9 a.m. This is a family-friendly event. Children and pets are welcome, though […]
Feeding America West Michigan Food Bank
Restaurateur Tony Griffin, owner of B.C. Pizza Belmont, isn’t timid about telling people how great his food is. “Our gourmet pizza selection is untouchable,” he said, “…Greek-Mediterranean pizza, Southwest Portabella and Steak, and the fan favorite Chicken Parmazeti, just to name a few. People rave about our crust. It’s a little on the sweeter side, which consequently makes the best bread sticks you’ve ever experienced.” But Griffin strives to make his restaurant more than just a place to eat. Located in the center of town, B.C. Pizza Belmont has become a fixture in the local nonprofit scene, offering fundraising opportunities to youth sports teams, churches and schools, and hosting an annual block party called the Heart of Belmont. The latest nonprofit to collaborate with B.C. Pizza Belmont is Feeding America West Michigan Food Bank, headquartered in Comstock Park. When Griffin learned about Feeding America West Michigan’s Million Meal March campaign—a six-month push to send a million meals to families in need from Benton Harbor through the Upper Peninsula—he quickly arranged a two-night benefit at his store. On August 15 and 16, B.C. Pizza Belmont donated 20 percent of every purchase for customers who mentioned Feeding America West Michigan. In the 40 counties that Feeding America West Michigan serves, one in six people is food insecure, and in Kent County alone, nearly 85,000 people don’t know where there next meal is coming from. B.C. Pizza Belmont is the first restaurant to host a benefit night under Feeding America West Michigan’s Million Meal March campaign. This multifaceted campaign will showcase the hunger-relief efforts of local restaurants through March 2013, channeling West Michigan’s passion for top-flight cuisine into a passion for feeding the hungry. Participating restaurants include Brick Road Pizza (Aug. 22), Honey Creek Inn and Grist Mill (Sept. 22) and Reds on the River (TBA). “Nothing beats throwing a pizza dough in the air and spinning it around like a tilt-a-whirl,” Griffin rhapsodized. But making pizza to help struggling families—that might come close. For more information about Feeding American West Michigan Food Bank, visit www.feedingamericawestmichigan.org. For more information about B.C. Pizza, visit www.bcpizza.net.