Another Plate on the Table

Wednesday, May 1, 2019 | Echo Valley Country Club, 3150 Echo Valley Dr, Norwalk, IA 50211

5:00 to 8:00 p.m.
A unique dining experience honoring Dan Sears’ legacy

How You Can Honor Dan’s Memory and Support Children in Need

Right now, 1 in 6 Iowa children struggle with hunger. The Food Bank of Iowa is the state’s largest anti-hunger organization, serving more of our neighbors in need than any other. Your support can help provide up to 4 meals per dollar, helping children, families, and seniors struggling with food insecurity get the food they need to thrive.

Proceeds from every ticket purchased and all donations go to support the Food Bank of Iowa’s School Pantry and BackPack ProgramsTM.

Here in Iowa, the breadbasket of the world, no child should go hungry. You can help make sure every Iowan has the vital food they need.

Featured Chefs

Bobby Tursi
Latin King
Joey Gatto
Jimmy Lacona
Noah’s Ark
Mario Tumea
Tumea & Sons
George Formaro
Frances Graziano
Graziano Brothers


Appetizer: Baratta’s Onion Rings
Salad: Centro Salad
Bread: Tumea & Sons Dinner Rolls
Entrees: Noah’s Ark Cavatelli and Latin King Chicken Spedini
Dessert: Tumea & Sons’ Guantis and Assorted Italian Cookies by Francis Graziano and the Italian American Cultural Center

Dan Sears’ Legacy

Throughout Dan’s childhood on Des Moines’ South Side, he was immersed in Italian food culture. Through his work in the canteen at Fort Des Moines, working in the Italian Gardens, at the dinner tables of his neighbors, and in legendary Des Moines restaurants (Wimpy’s Steak House, Latin King, Baratta’s, Disco Inferno, Babe’s, Noah’s Ark Ristorante, Chuck’s, Tumea’s, and more), Dan was immersed in the culture of caring for one another. But it was about more than enjoying a good meal.

Brown paper bags, closed at the top and priced with black crayon, sat at the register at Angie’s California Fruit Market. “I’ll take all of those, too, Angie” Dan would say after gathering his own groceries. As he loaded his car, Dan would call to one of the neighborhood boys zipping around the lot on their bicycles. Soon, the boy was on his way home with a brown paper sack full of fresh produce. There were no basketball hoops, candy stores, or playgrounds near the market. The only reason for the boys to hang around Angie’s was because they and their families needed food. Dan was determined that they would get it.

Throughout Dan’s life, he welcomed his children’s friends – and even kids that tagged along that he didn’t know would be there – to the dinner table. No matter what was on the menu, there was plenty to go around. Dan was always cooking for the kids. The clean plate club warranted an ice cream cone!

In memory of an exceptional Iowan.
Dan Sears, 1935-2017

Walking Fed

Feb. 25-March 9, 2019 | Jay's CD and Hobby locations: 3315 SE 14th St, Des Moines, IA 50320; 1421 22nd Street, West Des Moines IA 50266; 3800 Merle Hay Rd, Des Moines, IA 50310 (In Merle Hay Mall)

Zombies should go hungry, but kids shouldn’t. When spring and summer break hit, kids who depend on school-based programs for breakfast and lunch no longer have access to these meals. This is where Food Bank of Iowa steps in to help. However, this help also depletes their inventory. This is why LAZER and Jay’s CD & Hobby are proud to present the return of the Walking Fed food drive to benefit Food Bank of Iowa in an effort to help feed the kids and keep their shelves stocked.

Help us Make Jay Pay—drop off cash or nonperishable food items at any of the Jay’s CD & Hobby or Lucky Gal Tattoo locations and Jay will match your donation by giving $1 for each pound of food or $1—for every $1 to the Food Bank of Iowa, for a maximum donation of $5,000!

Jay’s CD & Hobby Locations:

  • SE 14th Street & Park Ave, by Hy-Vee
  • Merle Hay Mall, Lower Level by Flix Brewhouse
  • 1421 22nd street in West Des Moines, just off I-235

Lucky Gal Tattoo Locations:

  • 3023 SW 9th St, Des Moines, IA 50320
  • 1550 N Ankeny Blvd. Suite 102, Ankeny, IA 50023
  • 2201 E University, Des Moines, IA 50317

You could also start your own food drive and drop off everything you collect at our big donation collection event at Jay’s location on 1421 22nd Street in West Des Moines on Saturday, March 9th between 10 am and 3 pm! You can also take advantage of great onsite donation incentives like 15% off anything in store for anyone who makes a cash or food donations and at any of the three Jay’s CD & Hobby locations, have the chance to win some cool prizes by making a donation, and even get your photo taken with Rock Girl Sydney!

You can even donate online through the Walking Fed Virtual Grocery Store powered by Unkl Ruckus’s Smoking Emporium and Skate Shop! Donate any amount you want or buy specific food packages that could feed a kid for a week, month, or even a year through the buying power of the Food Bank of Iowa!

Why are donations for the Food Bank of Iowa so important in March?

  • Spring time is our slowest period for donations
  • Summer time is the highest time of need for food insecure children
  • More than 175,000 Iowans in our service area are food insecure
  • 1 in 9 Iowans and 1 in 6 kids is food insecure
  • Last year, the Food Bank of Iowa provided more than 12 million lbs. of food to Iowans in need
  • For every $1 donation, The Food Bank of Iowa can provide up to 4 meals

The Walking Fed Food Drive, Jay’s CD & HobbyUnkl Ruckus’s Smoking Emporium and Skate Shop and LAZER 103.3 are proud supporters of the Food Bank of Iowa. The Food Bank of Iowa strives to meet the critical needs of a diverse population through its network of over 600 partner agencies in 55 Iowa counties. The partner agencies include food pantries, soup kitchens, homeless shelters and shelters for victims of domestic violence, non-profit day care and residential care centers, as well as child and senior programs including their new School Pantry program!

March Gladness

March 1 through March 31

A little friendly competition never hurt anyone — and in this case, it can help 175,000 Iowans struggling with food insecurity in our service area! Through our March Gladness campaign, every $1 you donate can provide up to 4 meals for Iowans in need, and win some glory for your Big 4 favorite!

The March Gladness campaign will run through the month of March. After the campaign ends, we’ll announce the winning team in true style on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Show Your True Colors

Make a gift to support your team today! Click your team’s button below to visit that campaign and make a gift. Remember, every $1 provides up to 4 meals for Iowans in need!




May 4, 2019 | Valley West Mall, 1551 Valley West Drive, West Des Moines, IA 50266

Canstruction logoCentral Iowa Canstruction returns in May 2019!

2016's winning Canstruction sculptureThe Food Bank of Iowa is proud to be the beneficiary of Central Iowa Canstruction, organized by the American Institute of Architects Iowa chapter. This incredible event provides tons (literally) of much-needed food to the Food Bank, all while bringing together ateliers and community groups to create fleeting artistic masterpieces.

Canstruction® is a unique charity art exhibition and event featuring structures made by teams of volunteers, youth groups and/or Canstruction contractors. The structures are made entirely out of full cans of food. At the end of the exhibitions or events, all food is donated to local hunger relief organizations.

Recognized for their commitment to art, innovation, and hunger relief, the art exhibitions and events have helped raise over 40 million pounds of food to local food banks since 1992.

2019 Details

Register Now!

2019 Central Iowa Canstruction Theme: Heroes and Villains

Build location & date:
Valley West Mall, 1551 Valley West Drive, West Des Moines, IA 50266
May 4, 2019

Team Coordinator
Adam Puls, Shive-Hattery

Registration open January 14-April 1, 2019
Early bird registration January 14-March 4, 2019

Entry fee:

  • Early bird registration: $75 per team
  • Regular registration: $90 per team
  • *Entry fee includes 5 T-shirts. Additional T-shirts are available for $15 per shirt.

Submit title and description by March 30, 2019

Strike Out Hunger

Throughout the Iowa Cubs baseball season

Iowa Cubs pitchers have extra incentive to strike out batters, thanks to Strike Out Hunger! For every I-Cubs strikeout, 72 Degrees Comfort Company will provide 20 meals to Iowans in need, all throughout the I-Cubs’ season. The 2016 and 2017 seasons were excellent years for strikeouts, resulting in nearly 50,000 meals donated to benefit Iowans in need!

When you’re at Principal Park, be sure to look for graphics on the left field video board and in your player bio packets!

Strike Out Hunger Leading Pitchers

2017: Seth Frankoff, 119 strikeouts (2,380 meals)
2016: Drew Rucinski, 116 strikeouts (2,320 meals)

Yankee Doodle Drive Against Hunger

Monday, July 2, 2018, 6:30 p.m. & 8:30 p.m. | Iowa State Capitol, 1007 E Grand Ave, Des Moines, IA 50319

Join us for the Des Moines Symphony’s 25th annual Yankee Doodle Pops, Iowa’s largest single-day concert event! This family-friendly and patriotic concert concludes with the area’s premier fireworks display over the downtown Des Moines skyline, and best of all, it’s FREE! Bring your picnic baskets, blankets and lawn chairs, or purchase food from an array of vendors at the concert. Join the Yankee Doodle Drive Against Hunger by making a donation online or at the concert!

Fund Drive

With Food Bank of Iowa, every $1 donated provides 4 meals for Iowans in need. Donate online to multiply your impact!

Food Drive

Visit any Des Moines-area Bank of the West or HyVee location in June and July to contribute food to the Yankee Doodle Drive Against Hunger! Our most needed items are:

  • Proteins (e.g. canned meat, canned fish)
  • Canned vegetables
  • Canned fruit
  • Canned soup
  • Dry pasta
  • Breakfast items, including cereal
  • 100% fruit juice
  • Paper and personal products (e.g. toothpaste, soap, toilet paper)


Spread a picnic blanket in the shadow of the State Capitol’s gold dome as the Des Moines Symphony performs American classics and patriotic songs to celebrate Independence Day!

Monday, July 2, 2018
6:30 p.m. prelude performance
8:30 p.m. main concert



Smoke Out Hunger 2019

Sunday, July 28, 2019 | Brenton Skating Plaza, 520 Robert D. Ray Drive, Des Moines, IA 50309

Smoke Out Hunger is back for 2019!

Des Moines’ premier BBQ event is back on Sunday, July 28, 2019! Enjoy all the BBQ you can eat from a smoke-tastic lineup of local pitmasters and restaurants (including some unique vegetarian BBQ options!). Pair your BBQ samplings with refreshing craft beers — all at no cost past the ticket price! Round out your Smoke Out Hunger experience with live music, lawn games, and picnic table board games. All proceeds benefit Food Bank of Iowa’s work to end hunger in Iowa! Kids 6-12 have a reduced price ticket, and kids 5 and under get in free.

Check back for more details as our event date approaches.

Enjoy Central Iowa’s Best BBQ!

2018 Vendor List:

Sip on Refreshing Craft Beer!

Summer calls for cold beer, and there’s nothing better than a great variety of local and national craft beer, all provided by Doll Distributing. Discover the best beer-BBQ pairings or just enjoy a cold one in the sun!

2018 Brewery List:

Enjoy live music

Adam Bruce will perform throughout the event!

Kids Activities


Brenton Skating Plaza, 520 Robert D. Ray Dr, Des Moines, IA 50309


Reach out to us at Food Bank of Iowa with any questions about Smoke Out Hunger or our mission to provide food for Iowa children, families, and seniors to lead full and active lives, strengthening the communities where they live. You can reach our communications manager, Danny Akright, at 515-867-2885 or by email at



Combat Hunger

November 15 & 16, 2018 | Locust Street in downtown Des Moines

There’s still time to participate in Combat Hunger 2018 through a virtual food drive! Sign up today!

The largest food drive in the state of Iowa, Star 102.5’s Combat Hunger raised more than 250,000 meals for Iowans in need in 2017. Join us as we continue to make a difference for Iowans in need!

Star 102.5 started Combat Hunger more than 25 years ago with one mission: help the Food Bank of Iowa provide meals for Iowans in need. Since then, Combat Hunger has provided millions of meals through the downtown encampment and food drives all across Central Iowa.

Get Involved: Start your own Combat Hunger food drive!

Join us at the Combat Hunger encampment in downtown Des Moines on November 16, 2018!

Combat Hunger – Ottumwa

November 15 & 16, 2018 | Food Bank of Iowa, Ottumwa branch, 705 W Main St, Ottumwa, IA 52501

Combat Hunger 2018 has wrapped! Stay tuned for information on Combat Hunger 2019 next fall.

The largest food drive in the state of Iowa, Star 102.5’s Combat Hunger raised more than 250,000 meals for Iowans in need in 2017. Now, Combat Hunger is coming to Ottumwa!

Star 102.5 started Combat Hunger more than 25 years ago with one mission: help the Food Bank of Iowa provide meals for Iowans in need. Since then, Combat Hunger has provided millions of meals through the downtown encampment and food drives all across Central Iowa.

Register your business, school, or other organization for a Combat Hunger food and fund drive today.

Get Involved: Start your own Combat Hunger food drive!

Spread the Love PB&J Campaign

February 1 through 28 | Everywhere

There are few things more wholesome than a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. You can help provide this easy meal to Iowans in need through Spread The Love, our February PB&J campaign. Make a gift online to help us buy food in bulk, host a food drive at your school, business, or other organization, or bring in some jars yourself — how you Spread the Love is up to you!

Turn Dollars into PB&J

With our purchasing power, we can turn just a few dollars into a big impact. Check out our Spread the Love virtual food drive to sponsor a case of peanut butter, a case of jelly, or even more!

Make a Gift

Your gift purchase power grand total
$1,960.20 1 pallet of protein-packed peanut butter 1,620 jars of peanut butter
$1,819.76 1 pallet of tasty strawberry or grape jelly 1,536 jars of jelly
$145.20 10 cases of protein-packed peanut butter 120 jars of peanut butter
$98.90 10 cases of tasty strawberry or grape jelly 120 jars of jelly
$14.52 1 case of protein-packed peanut butter 12 jars of peanut butter
$9.89 1 case of tasty strawberry or grape jelly 12 jars of jelly

Host a Food Drive

Hosting a food drive at your school, business, or other organization is a great way to bring in lots of peanut butter and jelly to help out. Visit our Food Drive page to learn some tips for success or register your food drive.

We’re able to accept donations of all kinds of food, but we ask that you make sure it’s unopened, in original packaging, and properly labeled.

Donate PB&J

You can drop off donations of peanut butter and jelly (or any other foods that you’d like to donate) at our Des Moines or Ottumwa distribution center! Check out our Donate Food page for donation hours and directions.