23rd Mayflower Marathon comes at desperate time for local food banks

HAMPTON ROADS, Va. - Three days, hundreds of thousands of meals.

The 23rd annual Mayflower Marathon kicked off Friday morning in support of food banks on both sides of the water.

It comes at a time when both the Foodbank of Southeastern Virginia and the Eastern Shore in Norfolk and the Virginia Peninsula Foodbank in Hampton are seeing a major shortage in donated food.

“I think folks are always interested in supporting others throughout our community and typically during the season of giving, folks are very generous, but for a number of reasons, we have not necessarily seen donations come in at the beginning of the month as we typically do," said Ruth Jones Nichols, CEO of the SEVA Foodbank.

Around the clock from 5:30 a.m. on Friday to 3 p.m. on Sunday, four locations will be accepting donations of food and cash. People looking to donate just have to drive up, and volunteers will take care of the rest.

Related: Norfolk residents need help to prepare and serve 200 Thanksgiving meals for neighbors in need 

The four locations are:

  • Pembroke Mall in Virginia Beach
  • University Blvd. Kroger in Suffolk
  • Coliseum Marketplace in Hampton
  • Tabb Kroger in York County

Donations dropped off at Peninsula locations will go to the Virginia Peninsula Foodbank and donations dropped off on the Southside will go to the SEVA Foodbank.

Last year, a record number of donations allowed the food banks to provide more than 690,000 holiday meals to local families in need.

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