Milk and food giveaway draws massive crowd in Irondequoit

Released July 21, 2020

A food-distribution event spearheaded by the American Dairy Association North East drew such a massive crowd to the parking lot of the former Medley Centre in Irondequoit Tuesday morning that hundreds of potential recipients had to be turned away.

The organization — with help from the town of Irondequoit, the Veterans Outreach Center, the Flaum Family, Upstate Niagara Cooperative and Renzi Foodservice — had announced it would hand out more than 4,000 gallons of milk and 43,000 pounds of other food to people in need at the drive-up event starting at 11 a.m. at the mall site, now known as Skyview on the Ridge.

By 8:30 a.m., two and half hours before the starting time, dozens of cars already had lined up, and the number grew exponentially throughout the morning.

Irondequoit Town Supervisor Dave Seeley estimated that around 2,000 cars tried to access the parking lot for the giveaway, which had enough milk and food for half that number.

By around noon, participation had to be cut off. Seeley said motorists who made it onto the site would get their allotments.

Each vehicle at the event, funded through the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program, was to be given two gallons of milk and one 20-pound box each of meat, produce and other dairy items. In all, there were 450 boxes of meat, 1,350 boxes of produce and 360 boxes of additional dairy items available.

Unlike food giveaways the town has hosted with Foodlink, the Association did not require people to register in advance, Seeley said.

"It just goes to show you that you never know what kind of demand you're going to get," he said. "The downside is that people who made the trip are not going to get the supply of food advertised. It's heartbreaking, and it speaks to the circumstances families are facing."


Article sourced from Democrat and Chronicle.