Fifth annual Mardi Gras for a Cause raises more than $10,000 for BackPack Snack Attack

Photo by Roger Gavan Warwick restaurants, local musicians, volunteers, residents and others once again stepped up to the plate to insure the success beyond expectations of the fifth annual Mardi Gras for a Cause. From left, Backpack Attack supporter Loretta Breedveld, owner of Warwick Valley B&B, committee members John Desibia, Mary Schweitzer and Shirley Puett, director of Back Pack Snack Attack; Fetch Restaurant employees Diamond Woods and Tom Cronin and Fetch owner Adam Powers.

Once again the Warwick restaurants, local musicians, volunteers, residents and others stepped up to the plate to insure the success beyond expectations of the fifth annual Mardi Gras for a Cause.

The event, held in the Village of Warwick on Feb. 28, raised more than $10,000 for BackPack Snack Attack, a non-profit organization that provides nutritional snacks to almost 300 needy school children each week of the school year.

Enough to fill 1,600 backpacks
The program is run entirely by a group of volunteers and supported by donations and fund raising.

BackPack Snack Attack has no overhead and 100 percent of the donated money goes to food and backpacks for the children. The proceeds from Mardi Gras will help fill more than 1,600 backpacks.

Five years ago, Mardi Gras for a Cause was dreamed up by a group of local musicians from Warwick who wanted to be able to celebrate the arts and the community.

The event was designed to provide a unique and memorable opportunity for people of all ages to come together and enjoy local live music along with food and drink specials while giving back to the community. The restaurants make a donation to Backpack Snack Attack but they are not tied to how much they earn that night.

‘We are very grateful’

Once again Warwick accountant Jeff Alario served as event chair and committee members were John Desibia, Mary Schweitzer and Shirley Puett.

“Special shout outs of heart-felt thanks to all 12 acts and bands involving 48 performers, 23 open mic youth performers, Mardi Gras review host Jeremy Langdale, sound man extraordinaire Will Orosz, all nine of our great restaurants, pubs, Fat Tuesday venues, their staff and all 26 of our Day of Our Host volunteers,” said Desibia. “We would also like to recognize our entertainment sponsor Truform Media Group for their top tier financial support, which brought the event over the top And special thanks to Jeff Alario and Associates, ShopRite, Warwick Press, Signarama, Friyo and Alto Music for their generous support and in-kind donations.”

Puett, director of Back Pack Attack, added: “We are so blessed to live in a community that is mindful of those who are struggling and need some extra help. With community support, Backpack Snack Attack is able to feed every child referred to us by the schools in Warwick. We are very grateful.”
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