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97 Rock DJ 'Rocks out Hunger' to benefit WNY food bank

97 Rock's DJ Jickster holds 'Rock out Hunger' to help needy families this holiday.

BY: Jennifer Lysiak, Lancaster Editor | November 26, 2013

LANCASTER- Braving the cold and discomfort for one week, 97 Rock’s DJ Jickster camped out in a full-sized tractor-trailer at Quaker Steak and Lube, 6727 Transit Road, in Lancaster, to collect non-perishable food, frozen turkeys, and cash to help those in need this Thanksgiving.

Now an eight-year tradition for DJ Jickster, 97’s “Rock out Hunger” began Wednesday, Nov. 20 and ended Wednesday, Nov. 27 with all donations being given to the Food Bank of WNY.

Sleeping in a reclining sofa chair with heaters keeping him warm throughout the day and night, DJ Jickster received attention from many individuals, businesses, and organizations, including the Lancaster Police PBA who donated 37 turkeys, throughout Western New York to help put food on the tables of many families this Thanksgiving.

“We decided we wanted to do something for the food bank eight years ago,” remarked DJ Jickster. “Larry Norton, the legendary Larry Norton, throughout his career has done crazy stunts like this, and he kind of passed the torch along to me. So, they asked me if I wanted to do this and I said, ‘sure’ and I’ve been doing it ever since.”

The Food Bank of WNY serves approximately 340 members agencies such as food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, and group homes in Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie and Niagara counties.

Monthly, through the member agencies, 96,179 individuals, including 38,685 children and 7,847 seniors receive food and non-food essentials. More than 34,000 households rely on the food bank’s services each month.

“A $1 donation helps to provide approximately five meals to hungry families in need. A $25 donation helps to provide approximately 125 meals and $100 donation helps to provide approximately 500 meals,” according to the Food Bank of WNY.

Last year, DJ Jickster was able to raise $19,002 in cash donations, 2,508 turkeys were donated, and 20,867 pounds of food was collected. For this year, as of Monday morning, $9,372 in cash donations were received, 7,000 pounds of non-perishable food, and 1,794 turkeys, which National Grid will be providing a match of each donated turkey.

“Every year, we have done this we have surpassed previous year’s totals,” said DJ Jickster. “I am overjoyed that we were able to help so many needy families in Western New York this year.” The need was up significantly and as fast as the turkeys came in, the food bank distributed them back to our local community through their member agencies. This is what Thanksgiving is all about.”

“Rock out Hunger” totals from 2006 through 2012 include; 82,469 pounds of food, 9,412 turkeys and $64,896 in cash donations.

“I really honestly enjoy doing this,” said DJ Jickster. “It’s fun for the most part. I get to meet a lot of great people.”

For more information on “Rock out Hunger” visit 97 Rock also holds a Make-A-Wish radio telethon every year in September, toy drives and Christmas parties for children. They have helped out with various charities throughout the last 30 years.

“Rock out Hunger” is also co-promoted by WKBW-TV, Channel 7 News.

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