New London Main Street and Citizens Bank Partner on Outskate Hunger to Benefit Gemma E. Moran United Way Labor Food Center
Citizens Bank and New London Main Street have partnered for Outskate Hunger, a new program set to hit the ice this February at the Rink at Parade Plaza. Supporting the Gemma E. Moran United Way Labor Food Center, the community is invited to skate, donate and celebrate the work of the Food Center which serves more than 20,000 men, women, and children in New London County each month. All those who donate a non-perishable food item on February 1, 8, 15 or 22 (all Fridays) will enjoy a free admission (including skate rental) from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. courtesy of the program's sponsor, Citizens Bank.
Designed to draw visitors to downtown New London, Outskate Hunger also seeks to bring attention to the growing issue of hunger in Southeastern Connecticut. According to a U.S. Census Bureau study, more than 21,000 people in Southeastern Connecticut live below the poverty level, while one in six children from the region are food insecure. Donated items will go directly to the Food Center which distributes more than two million pounds of donated, surplus food to nearly 100 food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, day care centers, and senior citizen programs in New London County each year.
According to Ned Handy, President, Citizens Bank, Connecticut, "Citizens Bank invests in sponsorships that will make a difference to the communities in which we live and work. Outskate Hunger is a partnership that will engage local residents, support a local nonprofit and will drive visitors to downtown New London. Join us as we lace up our skates and take to the ice to help alleviate hunger."
"Our Food Center's ability to alleviate hunger and food insecurity in the region depends on community partnerships like this one," stated Virginia L. Mason, President & CEO of United Way of Southeastern Connecticut. "We are very proud to join Citizens Bank and New London Main Street in bringing the community together to help our neighbors in need."
"New London Main Street and Citizens Bank have created a unique and impactful partnership that will encourage area residents to come downtown, have fun, and experience all this city has to offer. In addition to supporting a critical need in our area, Outskate Hunger serves as an example as to how the Rink @ Parade Plaza can be utilized for other beneficial community programs moving forward. We encourage local non-profits, schools and community groups to take advantage of the Rink for programs like this," says Tony Silvestri, board member of New London Main Street that oversees the Rink operations. "The Rink can be used for parties and fundraisers. It's a resource for the community that should be leveraged for the benefit of all."
This is the second season for the skating rink on the Parade Plaza (lower State Street) in New London's historic Waterfront District. More than 11,000 people skated on the Rink during its inaugural season in 2012. The Rink will remain open through early March and the current scheduled hours of operation are Monday - Friday, 3 p.m. to 8 p.m., Saturdays from Noon to 8 p.m., and Sundays from Noon to 5 p.m. Some exceptions may be made for special events or private parties. For general inquiries about the Rink, call 860-910-7787. Visit www.newlondonmainstreet.org for a full schedule of Rink activities.