Monarchs shake things up with food drive

The Monarchs Care Foundation, the charitable arm of the Manchester Monarchs, announced in a press conference on Tuesday that they are partnering with the New Hampshire Food Bank, Shaw’s supermarkets and AutoFair to host New Hampshire’s largest known collection of macaroni and cheese, the Max & Cheese Food Drive, at the Verizon Wireless Arena during the Monarchs’ home opener on Oct. 17.

The Monarchs Care Foundation is asking fans to bring boxes of macaroni and cheese to the team’s home opener vs. Portland. During the game, fans will be able to use the boxes as noise makers to cheer the Monarchs on to victory. At the end of the game, the team will collect the boxes of macaroni and cheese and donate them to the New Hampshire Food Bank. The Monarchs Care Foundation will also have boxes of macaroni and cheese available during the game for donations to the New Hampshire Food Bank.

"The Monarchs Care Foundation and the Manchester Monarchs are proud to partner with these local businesses to give back to the community and help feed the hungry," explained Monarchs president Jeff Eisenberg. "We are committed to the city of Manchester and the state of New Hampshire and by hosting the Max & Cheese Food Drive, we’ll be able to assist in feeding thousands of families across the state."

Shaw’s will be promoting the Max & Cheese Food Drive, as well as marketing their brand of macaroni and cheese at a discounted price of two boxes for $1.00, throughout 11 stores in New Hampshire. The Monarchs mascot, Max, will be visiting these locations to spread the word about the food drive and encourage fans to join him at the Monarchs’ home opener.

"Shaw’s is excited to be involved in this event with our friends at the New Hampshire Food Bank, and the Manchester Monarchs," said Shaw’s manager of community relations and associate communications Rick Tremblay. "What a fun and creative way to enjoy opening night and make a difference with a donation to the NH Food Bank. For Shaw’s, hunger relief is core to our charitable mission, and we are proud of our support, and of the long-standing relationship Shaw’s has had with the New Hampshire Food Bank."

In addition, AutoFair is challenging Monarchs fans to bring macaroni and cheese to the game by committing to match all fans’ donations collected at the game, up to $5,000, for the New Hampshire Food Bank.

"AutoFair is thrilled to be a part of this wonderful initiative," said President and CEO of AutoFair, Andy Crews. "We are committed to helping the hungry and making some noise at the Monarchs Home Opener. We challenge all fans to open their hearts and their wallets to help those less fortunate."

A box of macaroni and cheese is a meal in itself. It has the basic building blocks of a wholesome meal and it’s so easy to make, even kids can do it. Macaroni and cheese is a comfort food and a staple item at the New Hampshire Food Bank as it has a two-year shelf life.

"Macaroni and cheese is one of the most requested items at the food bank," said the New Hampshire Food Bank’s executive director Melanie Gosselin. "We distribute 20,000 pounds of food a day to individuals and agencies throughout the state. The demand for food grows on a daily basis and this food drive will assist us in meeting those demands."