MINNEAPOLIS-ST. PAUL, Minn. -- The Minnesota Twins and Major League Baseball today announced Channel One Regional Food Bank as the winner of the first-ever "All-Star Fans Choose" grant. Nearly 75,000 fans voted to help award a $500,000 grant to one of the seven Upper Midwest non-profit organizations named as finalists for the grant. Additionally, the remaining six finalists will each receive a $50,000 grant to further their missions. This $800,000 donation is a part of the 2014 All-Star legacy giving program, an effort by Major League Baseball, the Minnesota Twins and the Pohlad Family Foundation to leave a lasting legacy from the MLB All-Star Game throughout Twins Territory.
"A huge thanks to the overwhelming number of fans who voted for this first-ever 'Fans Choose' grant," said Bryan Donaldson, Executive Director of the Minnesota Twins Community Fund. "We're thrilled to have offered this opportunity to local non-profits thanks to the generosity of Major League Baseball, the Pohlad Family Foundation and the Minnesota Twins Community Fund."
Channel One Regional Food Bank works in partnership with others to help feed people in need. They plan to use the $500,000 grant to add more than 20,000 square feet of warehouse space at their Rochester location and build a kitchen and classroom to better serve and feed people in need. Channel One serves 13 counties in Southeast Minnesota and LaCrosse County in Wisconsin and an average of 100,000 people a year.
Nearly 100 non-profit groups from Minnesota, Iowa, North Dakota, South Dakota and western Wisconsin applied to be considered for this first-of-its-kind grant. A panel of judges, consisting of representatives from MLB, the local community and the Twins, determined the final seven non-profit projects based on the following criteria: impact on community, scope, timeline, environmental impact, sustainable design and quality of application.
Six other finalists for the "All-Star Fans Choose" grant will receive $50,000 to further their missions. These non-profit organizations include Camp Fire Minnesota of Chanhassen, Minn.; Cookie Cart of Minneapolis, Minn.; Hmong American Farmers Association of Vermillion, Minn.; Madison Claire Foundation of Woodbury, Minn.; Minnesota Adult and Teen Challenge of St. Michael, Minn. and People Serving People of Minneapolis, Minn.
The "All-Star Fans Choose" grant is a part of the most extensive legacy giving campaign in Midsummer Classic history. On Friday, April 25, the Twins and Major League Baseball announced plans for the 2014 All-Star community legacy efforts, including the contribution of more than $8 million toward local projects and national charitable initiatives. The unprecedented level of giving is possible due to a partnership between MLB Charities, the Twins Community Fund and the Pohlad Family Foundation.