Feed the Hungry Project’s MLK Gala has a goal of $100,000 to fund the Dream Center

Feb. 3—MIDDLETOWN — Those associated with the upcoming MLK Gala are expecting a major fundraiser as the event marks its 10th year of generating money to feed those in need.

The Feed the Hungry Project’s MLK Gala has set a goal of raising $100,000 this year, $40,000 more than last year, said Monique Patterson, an affiliate with the organization.

Proceeds will fund Dream Center operations and support programs, including the Thanksgiving meal and Christmas toy distribution, she said.

Feed the Hungry Project is a nonprofit organization dedicated to eradicating hunger in the community, she said. Since its inception in 1987, the organization has actively participated in various initiatives aimed at providing food security and support to people in need.

The gala will honor six individuals, including Pastor Darlene Bishop-Driscoll of Solid Rock Church; Kee Edwards, senior director of human resources, Middletown City Schools; Stephen “Steve” Hightower, president and CEO of Hightowers Petroleum Co.; Jerry Lucas, Basketball Hall of Famer and educational innovator; Jackie Phillips-Carter, Health Commissioner, Middletown City Health Department; and Jackie Silas-Butler, executive director of the GRAD Akron Project.

Lucas, 83, led the Middies to a 76-game winning streak and back-to-back state titles. He went on to play at Ohio State University, won a gold medal in the 1960 Olympics and was inducted into the NBA Hall of Fame.

The honorees will receive a plaque, a video of their testimony will be shown and they will give an acceptance speech, Patterson said.

She called the list of winners “very impressive.”

There will be a cocktail reception, dinner, entertainment, a live auction and an after party, she said.

The milestone event “promises” an evening of elegance, inspiration and philanthropy as Feed the Hungry commemorates “a decade of positive impact on our community,” Patterson said.

All attendees are encouraged to wear black tie attire.

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