Block Party With a Purpose

Meal-packing event to highlight NASCAR festivities in Bristol, TN

Drive to End Hunger Volunteer, Jim Saberton.

Volunteer Jim Saberton lends a helping hand at a recent Drive to End Hunger meal-packing event.

They’ll be racing under the lights on Saturday, Aug. 23, at the Bristol Motor Speedway, as Jeff Gordon goes for another win in what has been a great NASCAR season for the #24 team.

But for Jeff’s fans and all those committed to AARP and AARP Foundation’s Drive to End Hunger campaign to end senior hunger, the action really begins on Thursday, Aug. 21, when Food City throws another one of its fun-packed block parties on Downtown State Street in Bristol, TN, from 1 to 9 pm.

Learn more about the issue of senior hunger

This year, as part of the festivities, Chase is sponsoring a meal-packing event at Food City Race Night. Chase is donating more than 100,000 meals over the course of four such events this year. Chase is also donating money for the cause through its AARP Credit Card from Chase program, by donating $0.25 to AARP Foundation for Drive to End Hunger every time a cardholder uses the AARP Credit Card from Chase at a restaurant. Chase will donate up to $1 million through this campaign in 2014.

Previous Food City Race Nights have featured appearances by NASCAR drivers, musical performances, souvenir trailers, show cars, simulators and free food samples. Admission is free, and as many as 30,000 people have attended in the past. This year, while appearances and performances take place on a stage at one end of the block, Food City has donated space at the other end of the street for the meal packing event.

Volunteers to help pack meals who sign up for any of the four packing shifts will have an opportunity to win a chance to pack meals alongside Jeff Gordon during the final shift; 20 fans in all will be selected to help pack meals with their favorite NASCAR driver, who has already secured his spot in the season-ending Chase for the Sprint Cup.

In addition to the meals being donated by Chase, AARP Foundation will be presenting a check for $25,000 to the Second Harvest Food Bank of NE Tennessee. Mike Rittler, General Manager Chase Card Services, and AARP Foundation’s Chief Development Officer David Whitehead, will be on hand to present the check.

AARP and AARP Foundation launched Drive to End Hunger and joined forces with NASCAR champion Jeff Gordon in 2011 to address the staggering food needs of America’s struggling older adults, nearly 9 million of whom suffer from food insecurity every day. What does “food insecurity” mean? It means these older adults don’t know where their next meal is coming from, or whether they will be able to have that next meal at all. It means they make tough choices between food and rent or even medicine.

You can still sign up to volunteer at the meal-packing event. And don’t worry: You’ll have plenty of time to also enjoy all the entertainment treats of a genuine Southern-style block party.

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