Ingles Markets and MANNA FoodBank celebrate 22nd Anniversary of the Ingles Giving Tree

Ingles Markets and MANNA FoodBank are pleased to invite the community to the 22nd lighting of the Ingles Giving Tree at the Asheville Mall on Monday, November 24th, 2014 from 5 to 7 p.m.

The Ingles Giving Tree is made of food, right down to the core, with ten tons of non-perishable food items donated by Ingles Markets. The tree is constructed and decorated by MANNA staff and volunteers in a marathon effort that takes place the weekend before Thanksgiving. Sally Spiegel, an Asheville area Designer and Project Manager, plans out the final look of tree. Last year’s design featured cascading “ribbons” of juice, paper towels, canned vegetables and cereal topped off with hundreds of spice jars.1402219_10202690654332051_1029807606_o

The celebratory lighting of the tree by Mrs. Ingle follows on Monday. Holiday music will be provided by the Reynolds High School Woodwind Quintet and the Bell Elementary School Chorus.

There will be a drawing for a $500 Ingles gift card on Wednesday, November 26th.  In order to be entered in the drawing, individuals must bring an Ingles bag full of non-perishable food items to the Giving Tree on the 24th or 25th of November.

The Ingles Giving Tree is made possible not only by donations from Ingles Markets, but through the generous spirit of Western North Carolina. This year Ingles will be offering Giving Tree symbolic empty plates at the registers of all their stores through MANNA’s 16-county service area. The plates will be available from November 23rd through December 6th for a $1 donation to MANNA.

Ingles will match all financial donations to MANNA this holiday season, up to a total of $25,000. MANNA FoodBank is able to provide food for 3 meals with every dollar donated. “We partner with MANNA year-round to help provide food for families facing hunger,” said Ron Freeman, CFO of Ingles Markets, “but we recognize that the holidays can be especially difficult. We invite our customers to celebrate the lighting of the tree and to join in giving in whatever way they can.”

“In 2013, over one million pounds of food went out of our warehouse every month,” said MANNA FoodBank Executive Director Cindy Threlkeld. “To put it in perspective, look at the tree this year, made with 20,000 pounds of food. We distribute nearly 2 “trees” worth of food every single day of the year to food pantries and programs throughout Western North Carolina. This would not be possible without the strong support of corporate partners like Ingles or the generosity of donors and volunteers. We celebrate these acts of kindness every year when we light the Giving Tree.”