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Save the Date – Front Range Rally 2017!

Front Range Rally 2017Save the Date for the 2017 Front Range Rally – May 20! Now in its fifth year,  Front Range Rally is a beer festival and food truck rally that celebrates Colorado’s rich culture of craft brewing and myriad of mobile food vendors in our region. One hundred percent of the net proceeds from the festival will be given to the Food Bank to support our vision of a hunger-free Larimer county.

This year’s Front Range Rally will feature nearly 55 craft beverage makers that will serve over 150 unique beers, wines, ciders and spirits alongside ten local food truck favorites that will deliver an array of delicious fare. Live, local music will grace the stage to round out a perfect day of fun in the Colorado sun.

The Rally will take place Loveland Food Share, 2600 N. Lincoln, Loveland, CO from 2:30 – 7 PM on May 20th, 2017.

Tickets are now on sale and can be purchased at www.FrontRangeRally.com. With early bird pricing through March 31st, tickets are only $30! After this special pricing period, tickets will go up to $40; $50 at the door. Ticket includes admission to festival grounds, food trucks, live music, and UNLIMITED beer sampling. (Food is sold separately.) V.I.P. tickets and designated driver tickets are also available.

We still have room for additional sponsors, food trucks, and craft brewers and distillers. If you’re interested, please contact us for more information. The Front Range Rally will also be looking for volunteers beginning in April.

Click here to see a current list of participating breweries, food trucks, and get your tickets. Don’t forget to invite your friends to the Rally!

 

Join Us for the 2017 Corporate Food Fight!

Corporate Food Fight - Food Bank for Larimer countyJoin the Food Bank for Larimer County for the 18th Annual Corporate Food Fight this April. One of our signature fundraising events, the Corporate Food Fight challenges local businesses to raise food and funds for the Food Bank for Larimer County to help us feed families, children, and seniors in need in our community.

The challenge spans the entire month, but each company designs their own campaign timeline and style. Some participants do a basic and simple food drive or have a food-based event such as a bake sale or chili cook-off – others get downright creative and do things like executive tricycle races or have genuine food fights! The more engaging and fun, the better! Businesses can also elect to set up an online portal to capture donations and encourage customers, families, and friends of employees to campaign on behalf of the business as well.

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Local Artists Contribute to Ending Hunger at Empty Bowls

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Empty Bowls event.  As a major fundraiser for the Food Bank, Empty Bowls raises awareness by reminding us that thousands of our neighbors face empty bowls on their tables throughout the year. For the price of one ticket to Empty Bowls, guests will help the Food Bank provide over $250 worth of food to serve hope to families in need in our community.  To mark this momentous anniversary, this year’s Empty Bowls will feature a VIP Artist Reception, live auction clay throwing demonstrations, and a special program from Food Bank CEO, Amy Pezzani. Local notable artists will be performing in clay throwing demonstrations and donating original artwork to the silent auction. Artists include:

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Join us for the 20th Anniversary of Empty Bowls!

Empty Bowls 2017This year marks the 20th Anniversary of Empty Bowls on February 2, 2017. This major fundraiser for the Food Bank for Larimer County began at Lopez Elementary when an art teacher, Mike McCarthy, inspired his students to create empty bowls to represent those who do not have enough to eat. Forty community members gathered at Lopez and an annual event to raise funds and awareness for hunger-relief in Fort Collins was born. In 1997, the inaugural year of Empty Bowls, the Food Bank for Larimer County distributed two million pounds of food to those in need. As Empty Bowls has grown, so too has the need in our community.

By purchasing tickets to the Empty Bowls event, guests will receive a hand-crafted pottery bowl created by a Poudre School District student or local artist. Fort Collins’ restaurants will provide soup for dinner and ice cream and coffee for dessert.  A silent art auction will also take place during the event.

As a major fundraiser for the Food Bank, Empty Bowls raises awareness by reminding us that thousands of our neighbors face empty bowls on their tables throughout the year. For the price of one ticket to Empty Bowls, guests will help the Food Bank provide over $250 worth of food to serve hope to families in need in our community.

Empty Bowls has grown from offering five signature soups in 1998 to over twenty soups in 2016 and has raised more than $775,000 over the years for the Food Bank’s hunger-relief programs.

Special 20th Anniversary Events Include:

  • VIP Artists’ Reception at 4:30 pm – more details to come!
  • Live Auction Clay Throwing
  • Special Anniversary Program
  • Recognition Ceremony

Seating is limited at the Empty Bowls event, purchase your tickets here as they frequently sell out.

Details:

Date: Thursday, February 2, 2017
Time: 5:30 – 8:30 pm
Location: Hilton Fort Collins
Tickets: $55/individual; $100/pair
Purchase your tickets.

Dohn Construction Raises $15,000 for Food Bank for Larimer County

On Friday, August 19, 2016, Dohn Construction hosted its 6th Annual Charity Golf Tournament, raising $15,250 for the Food Bank for Larimer County’s children’s programs. The tournament was held at Pelican Lakes Golf Course and Country Club in Windsor, CO and boasted 144 participants representing 34 Northern Colorado construction and architecture companies.

Dohn Construction President Doug Dohn explains, “Food scarcity is a growing issue for Larimer County’s youth, leading to poor health and performance in school. I’m happy this donation will help the Food Bank in offering kids nutritious meals. The golf tournament is one of the highlights of my year because I love seeing industry leaders come together for a great cause.”Dohn Construction’s annual golf tournament raises funds for a different area charity each year.

A late-afternoon thunderstorm ended the 2016 tournament early, leaving no winner to take home the top prize. However, the event continued to raise funds through a silent auction and games throughout the course. Silent auction items and raffle prizes were donated by 33 area businesses.

Take Action!

Nothing runs on empty. Not your phone, your car, your computer. Unfortunately, the feeling of running on empty is a reality for nearly 43,000 neighbors who often don’t have enough to eat.

The rising costs of housing, childcare and other expenses combined with slow wage growth make it increasingly difficult for thousands of households to keep up. When facing tough choices, cutting back on food is often the solution, but it comes at a price. Hunger and health are deeply connected. People who are food insecure are disproportionally affected by diet-related diseases such asHAM_DryErasePlate_Front diabetes and high blood pressure. Food insecurity is also linked to poor psychological and behavioral health.

For seniors, food insecurity makes it difficult to manage illness and maintain health. After a lifetime of work, many seniors face unexpected medical issues while living on fixed incomes and are forced to choose between paying for groceries and buying medicine. On empty stomachs, kids don’t have the energy to focus, engage, learn and grow. Yet, this is the reality for 1 in 3 children in Larimer County.

For over 30 years, Food Bank for Larimer County has been dedicated to providing food to all in need. Last year, we distributed enough food for 7.4 million meals. We work hard to offer foods that promote good health, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean proteins. We believe that making healthy choices available to our guests will nourish both body and soul and help stabilize lives and build a vibrant community.

September is Hunger Action Month. Together with Feeding America, food banks across the country are working to raise awareness of the impact of food insecurity and motivate action. The symbol of this year’s campaign is the empty plate. An empty plate means an empty stomach. And on an empty stomach, no one can thrive. This month, we’re asking everyone to come together to help end hunger. We offer a variety of ways you can get involved. Take a tour. Volunteer. Donate.  Together, we can help ensure everyone has the fuel they need to succeed.

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Kids Cafe Volunteers

Volunteering has many faces here at Food Bank for Larimer County. Some of our volunteers choose to cook, while others sort. Some choose to grow food to donate. Others choose to help with our events. We have many spots at the Food Bank for volunteers, but by far, the most popular choice is to volunteer with Kids Cafe.
Not only do Kids Cafe Volunteers directly have a hand in making sure children can eat this summer, but they have a hand in directly influencing the future of our community. By providing children nutritious and plentiful meals we help children do better in school along with other activities and we assist in keeping children healthy and strong.
“It’s just the right thing to do,” explains Tom Inscho. “And we have a lot of fun doing it. In life, we connect the dots to many things happening in the world. In my working life and my career there were many dots, seven or eight dots, if I do this then this will happen, and so on, to where eventually something good happens. In this, it is like one dot. If I do this, kids eat today.” Inscho is part of a group of volunteers that work in the kitchen, for Kids Cafe, every Wednesday at 10am. “It’s very satisfying to know that I can do something and it turns into something good.”
“I’ve been doing this every week for three years” Cynthia Bush said “I don’t know if other groups have as much fun as us we do, but it’s great. We laugh, we play music, we catch up and we are helping children.” Bush was previously a schoolteacher and witnessed firsthand the need for Kids Cafe in the Larimer County community. Today, with her group of friends on Wednesday, she is able to support that program.
For children who are food insecure many things are more difficult than for children who have consistent and healthy food at home. Many children from food insecure households have a harder time in school due to frequent illness-related absences or the inability to focus on learning. In the summer, when free and reduced school lunches are not available, kids can go days without a meal. If parents are able to purchase food, due to income restrictions, they will often choose cheaper and less-healthy food for children, which can lead to higher rates of childhood obesity and diabetes. Our Kids Cafe provides healthy meals to help children thrive in the summer.
Volunteers like Tom and Cynthia are the hearts and hands of Kids Cafe. With their help, each year, our Kids Cafe provides over 165,000 healthy meals and snacks. Our work would not be possible without the help of our fantastic and dedicated volunteers!
To learn more about volunteering at the Food Bank, please contact BenMensch at bmensch@foodbanklarimer.org or visit our website: foodbanklarimer.org/volunteer/

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Exclusive chef collaboration & competition

 

FOOD BANK FOR LARIMER COUNTY TO BENEFIT FROM EXCLUSIVE CHEF COLLABORATION & COMPETITION

 Fort Collins, CO – February 22, 2016 – New this year, the Food Bank for Larimer County is partnering with the community event specialists at Fortified Collaborations to offer a fresh “TASTE” of culinary creativity to benefit hunger-relief programs in Larimer County. This year’s event will be held on April 14, 2016 at the Hilton Fort Collins from 6-9 pm. This first of its kind collaboration & competition will feature five teams of the area’s finest chefs. Each team will collaborate to create a themed tasting menu featuring one or more common produce staples (onions, potatoes, carrots, cabbage and apples) regularly available to the Food Bank’s clients. Guests will see firsthand how chefs transform the ordinary into the extraordinary and have a chance to sample items not found on menus anywhere in Northern Colorado. Teams will be expertly paired with local craft beers and flavorful wines for a first-class experience.

“We are so excited for the opportunity to collaborate with local chefs and restaurants in a new way, bringing a fresh approach to THE TASTE for its 23rd year,” said Kristina Cash, Founder, Fortified Collaborations. “We’ve received only rave responses from the participating chefs and can’t wait to see what they will present on April 14!”

Only 300 individual tickets will be sold to this one-of-a-kind event. Tickets are $120 and each ticket sold will provide $600 worth of food to ensure everyone in our community has the nourishment they need to thrive and succeed. TASTE tickets can be purchased online at www.tastebenefit.org. Included with each ticket, guests will have the opportunity to sample creative, 5-star cuisine not on any menu; enjoy champagne & fine cheeses at Bubble Stations; interact with local chefs to learn the story of their cuisine; vote for Toast of THE TASTE; cap off the evening at the coffee, tea & dessert bar; relax with live jazz music; bid on fabulous packages in a bountiful silent auction; and receive all of the evening’s extraordinary recipes.

“After decades of successfully raising funds for hunger-relief programming through THE TASTE, we’re looking forward to bringing a fresh, new culinary concept to the community,” said Heather Buoniconti, Chief Development Officer, Food Bank for Larimer County. “We think guests will love the new event as it is truly about collaboration and community; or more precisely, everyone sharing their talents and treasures to work towards ending hunger in Larimer County.”

 

Chefs & Restaurants for 2016 TASTE

David Bowyer – 4th Street Chophouse; Troy Heller – Ace Gillett’s; Jeff Blackwell & Brent Rortbert – Austin’s American Grill; Rudy Burns – Babette’s Feast Bakery & Catering; Mckinzy Calapp – Café Vino; Dave Neas – CooperSmith’s Pub & Brewing; Matt Smith – Door 222; Jeff Blackwell & Issac Moreno – Enzio’s Italian Kitchen; Alex Runge – FCB Modern Tavern; Oskar Arevalo –  Fish; Justin Kruger – Food Bank for Larimer County’s Community Kitchen; Vince Clark – Food for Thought Catering; Rhys Edmunds – Jay’s Bistro; Jeff Blackwell – Moot House; Brian Shaner – Nick’s Homestyle; Karin Vandermeere – Origins Wine Bar & Pizza; Amelia Mouton – Restaurant 415; Alex Feldman – Rare Italian; Aaron Conkley – Rio Grande Mexican Restaurant; Benjamin Rosing – Spring Creek Grille @ the Hilton, Dave Daggett – TasteBuds and Rise!; Nate Hines – Welsh Rabbit Bistro.

 

2016 TASTE Sponsors

With the generous support of event sponsors, including presenting sponsor University of Colorado Health, 100% of ticket sales will support hunger-relief programming in Larimer County. Additional sponsors include: Bohemian Foundation, Claypot Creative, Flood and Peterson, Food Services of America, Fortified Collaborations, Kluver-Moore Foundation, Motherlove, Citizen Printing, Dellenbach Motors, Elks Lodge #804, FirstBank, Gary & Dee Ludwin, Neenan Archistruction, Pedersen Toyota and Dr. Robert M. Williams and Ms. Jill J. Williams. Media sponsors include: The Coloradoan, Feasting Fort Collins, KUNC and Style.

For more information, visit www.tastebenefit.org.

 

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About Food Bank for Larimer County:

Founded in 1984, the Food Bank for Larimer County is the county’s only Feeding America clearinghouse for donated food. In 2015, the Food Bank provided 8.9 million pounds of food to low-income residents through three programs: Food Share, Kids Cafe and Food Link. Food Share is a client-choice, fresh food pantry with locations in Fort Collins and Loveland that provides donated and government food to income qualifying individuals up to two times per week. Nearly 29,000 Larimer County residents received assistance through Food Share last year. Kids Cafe provides free, nutritious meals to low income children after school and during the summer. The Food Bank prepared and delivered over 81,000 meals to at-risk children last year. Food Link provided food to 87 non-profit organizations for use in their programs for low income individuals. These organizations include food pantries, soup kitchens, after school programs and domestic violence shelters among others. For more information please visit www.foodbanklarimer.org or www.facebook.com/foodbankforlarimercounty.

Events

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The Taste 2017

With flavorful food, complementing beverages and a passion for helping the hungry, the area’s top chefs, restaurants, wineries and breweries gather for THE TASTE, a major fundraising event for the Food Bank for Larimer County. You won’t find another opportunity to try a wide variety of fabulous food and delicious drink under one roof!

All guests at THE TASTE enjoy unlimited tastings of delicious food and fabulous drink and the opportunity to chat with local chefs, wine experts and brew masters in a fun-filled cocktail party atmosphere. Guests also have an opportunity to vote for their favorite restaurant and beverage purveyor and award the “Toast of THE TASTE.” Live  music and a silent auction filled with fun items and experiences donated by local businesses round out the evening.

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