Continues To Fight Hunger In
Conjunction With 73rd Parade
EL PASO, Texas (September 10, 2009) - The
Sun Bowl Association, FirstLight Federal Credit Union and West Texas Food Bank
have come together for the fourth consecutive year to fight hunger in
conjunction with the FirstLight Federal Credit Union Sun Bowl Parade.
"FirstLight Federal Credit Union is proud to
sponsor the Sun Bowl parade for the fifth year in a row," said Karl Murphy,
president of FirstLight Federal Credit Union. "The difficult economic times
that we have faced together over the past year have further emphasized
the tremendous opportunity we have for continued partnership with the West
Texas Food Bank. This partnership will give El Pasoans the chance to work
together to support their neighbors by providing food for this holiday season
The parade, themed this year "Don't Touch
That Dial," is the most attended event in the Southwest, drawing large crowds
every Thanksgiving. Thus, sponsoring a canned food drive for the area's less
fortunate during a time when help is most needed is a cause that Sun Bowl
Association president Frank Bates believes can have an positive impact on our
Any organization can join the contest that
will begin Oct. 1 and run through Nov. 6. The Sun Bowl Association, FirstLight
Federal Credit Union and West Texas Food Bank will honor the contest winner
with a pre-built float displaying their name to commence the parade.
"This partnership has secured over 100,000
pounds of food in the first three years of the food drive," said Bates. "Last
year's food drive contest winner was ADP, who launched an employee initiative
to fight hunger in our region."
Additionally, the winning organization will
also have the opportunity to have one company vehicle in the parade as well as
have participants walking around the float and interacting with the crowd.
"With over 300,000 people attending the
parade each year, this is a great incentive for any organization to promote
itself around El Paso and surrounding areas," added Bates. "It is also a way of
giving back during the holiday season."
The parade will take place Thursday, Nov.
26 on Montana Avenue, between Ochoa and Copia Streets.
Attendees are also asked to bring canned
goods to the parade as volunteers will be collecting the items for the food
drive along the parade route. "The help
of every individual in our community is more important than ever, and if every
person attending the parade will commit to bring one or two cans of food, this
can make a tremendous difference in reaching out to our neighbors in need,"
said West Texas Food Bank executive director Hyta Folsom.
"We are seeing more and more people who
need our help - many who are struggling with day to day expenses just to take
care of the basics of life - food, clothing, and shelter," added Folsom.
The West Texas Food Bank annually serves
117,000 people in the 22 counties of West Texas
providing over five million pounds of food a year.
Enhancing the Parade
The Sun Bowl Association revitalized the
Parade last year, as local companies and volunteers helped grow the number of
floats from 15 to 22. The SBA is looking to see that number grow to 25, giving
the FirstLight Federal Credit Union Sun Bowl Parade the most floats in the
procession since 1973.
Material donations are also needed for
float construction to enhance the parade. Items needed include building
material such as rebar, steel tubing, and wood, hardware such as bolts, nuts,
and nails, tools such as saws and drills, and cotton trailers or working trucks
to build around. Additionally, voluntary assistance is needed to transport
materials to the float-building location, to design and build a float, and to
build/sponsor floats of their own. Monetary donations to help with
float-building costs are also of high importance. Anyone who is able to help
with the requests will be listed in thank you advertisements that pertain to
the parade. All donations are tax-deductible.
Ten local companies have already joined the
float-building effort - A-1 Welding,
Banes General Contractors, Buzz Oates/RJL Associates, Daniel Buck, El Paso Connection,
El Paso Machine & Steel Inc., Home Depot, JD Abrams, Seal Rite and SNT
For more information about the 2009
FirstLight Federal Credit Union Sun Bowl Parade Food Drive or to donate to
float-building, please contact Joe Daubach, Sun Bowl special events director at