Organizers dedicate parade to food banks

Ocean County organizers turned the annual St. Patrick's Day parade Saturday into an opportunity to help those struggling during this economic crisis by collecting items for New Jersey food banks. The

News 12 Staff

Mar 15, 2009, 12:58 AM

Updated 5,601 days ago

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Ocean County organizers turned the annual St. Patrick's Day parade Saturday into an opportunity to help those struggling during this economic crisis by collecting items for New Jersey food banks.
The parade through Seaside Heights had all the typical elements, including bagpipers, marching bands and between 75,000 and 100,000 spectators. But this year, organizers set out large bins to collect non-perishable food items to help feed the hungry and homeless. Workers and volunteers say the step was a "no-brainer," and making the celebration into an opportunity to help the needy was easy.
"This year, the 25th annual parade is being dedicated to the food banks of New Jersey to help the people hard-pressed by these economic times," Bernard Viggiani, publications director for the parade, says.
One observer, Michael Voto, of Seaside Heights, says he enjoys the parade each year and was happy to donate an entire bag of groceries. Voto says his fellow spectators were excited to turn the celebration into a good cause.
"I'd do anything for people in need and less fortunate than I am," Voto says.


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