Giving Back

Tons of Support: Annual Summit Frozen Turkey Drive Sees Spike in Giving

Riders, including Hilltop Bicycles co-owner Tom Dunn, right, deliver their birds.
Joe, a representative from the Community Food Bank of New Jersey joins Other Fellow First Foundation Chairman Brett Haire, center, and event organizer Julie Keenan.
The turkeys began to stack up early in the day.
All collected food and monetary donations benefit the Community Food Bank of New Jersey.
Some folks brought so much that they needed a box to carry their donation.
Unofficially, the youngest donator.
Every Turkey Ride participant received a commemorative shirt.
The inagural Turkey Ride gathers before setting off on a 12-mile journey.
"Official" group photo.
Ken Rizzie, third from left, the store manager at Kings Food Market in Summit, rolled out the ''orange carpet" for the Turkey Riders.
In the check-out line at Kings Food Market.
While their was a small breakaway pack, most of the Turkey Ride peleton arrived en masse at the Summit Diner.
Event organizer Julie Keenan, with son Bennett Hermann, and husband Jesse Hermann.

SUMMIT, NJ - Just days before giving thanks themselves, the Hilltop City's residents opened their hearts in a big way, enabling the Summit Annual Frozen Turkey Drive to collect increased volumes of donated food and monies, surpassing 2013 totals by more than 20 percent,  All donations benefit the Community Food Bank of New Jersey (CFBNJ).

According to the Other Fellow First Foundation, organizers of the event, more than two and one-half tons -- 5,000-plus pounds -- of frozen turkeys were donated, along with two and one-half tons of groceries, and an estimated $5,000 in cash.  The Summit Diner, which served as the collection point for the drive, was a hub of activity from morning to late afternoon.

The event began at 9:30 a.m., with the event's first-ever Turkey Ride.  Sam Cooper and Tom Dunn, co-owners of Hilltop Bicycles, hosted a group of approximately 40 riders -- including several members of the Summit Volunteer First Aid Squad -- who left the store on Springfield Avenue for a 12-mile ride that was traditional albeit for one aspect - stopping at Kings Food Market in Summit, purchasing a frozen turkey, and riding with the bird to the diner's collection bins.  

At Kings, store manager Ken Rizzie and his staff put frozen turkeys in shopping carts near the cash registers, discounted the turkeys 10% for all riders, and put out collection cans all day to accept donations.

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Momentum Cycling and Fitness also hosted an indoor version of the Turkey Ride, hosting a spin class that was free to anyone making a donation to the CFBNJ..

Spearheaded by Other Fellow First Chairman Brett Haire, this was the Seventh Annual Thanksgiving Food Drive in Summit.  Summit’s Other Fellow First Foundation each year asks the City of Summit to help New Jersey families in distress around Thanksgiving and, each year, residents have turned out in force to share their generosity with the less fortunate, contributing more than nearly 20 tons of turkeys, more than12 tons of groceries, and $84,000 in cash.

Summit resident Kathleen DiChiara, President and CEO of Community Food Bank of New Jersey, said that many of Summit's New Jersey neighbors are struggling and that, despite The Community Food Bank distributing more than four million pounds of food per month to the needy., they cannot keep up with the demand.

"This Thanksgiving will be one of New Jersey’s most defining, as the sluggish economy, a lingering Superstorm Sandy hangover, and recent layoffs in Atlantic City combine to create the perfect storm for the needy, said DiChiara.  "For those who can help their neighbors, this is the time your extra efforts will make a huge difference to New Jersey families who are truly desperate."
Investors Bank kicked off this year’s effort with a generous underwriting gift.  "We are especially  grateful to Investors Bank for their ongoing support,' said DiChiara.
Although the event itself has successfully concluded, the need continutes and monetary donations are always welcome and accepted.  To learn more about the Other Fellow First Foundation, or to make an online donation, visit  Donations are also accepted in person at the Summit Diner -- located at 1 Union Place -- or by check, made payable to Other Fellow First Foundation and mailed to:
Brett Haire
47 Summit Avenue
Summit, NJ

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