SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – For the seventh consecutive year, The Summit League is extending its "Food Fight" initiative to the league basketball championships Fan Fest, March 4-5, in Sioux Falls, S.D. Fans attending tournament games are invited to bring food to donate.
Food will be collected on Saturday and Sunday at Fan Fest from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Feeding South Dakota booth located in the main lobby of the Sioux Falls Arena. Feeding South Dakota will help facilitate the food drive and donations will go to the Sioux Falls Food Pantry. Fans are invited to make donations at the Feeding South Dakota table in the main lobby. Fans that bring at least three non-perishable food items or donate at least $5 at the Feeding South Dakota table get a chance to spin the prize wheel. Fans that donate at least $10 or bring in at least 10 non-perishable food items are eligible to enter a drawing to win two all-session tickets and two VIP passes to the 2018 Summit League Basketball Tournament at the Denny Sanford PREMIER Center.
"Every year the Summit Basketball Tournament gets bigger, better and more exciting," said Jennifer Stensaas of Feeding South Dakota. "We are very proud and honored that they have chosen Feeding South Dakota to support again this year while they are in Sioux Falls. Last year, Feeding South Dakota distributed over 13.5 million pounds of food and grocery items to over 350 hunger relief agencies throughout the state. Without organizations like The Summit League, we could not do what we do."
The event, which marks the seventh year of its kind at The Summit League Basketball Championships, is an extension of the nine-year league-wide drive. This year, 18 "Food Fight" games were designated during the basketball season with each host school having exactly one week per game to collect food and/or cash donations. At the end of the Food Fight schedule, the school that raises the most amount of food, measured in pounds, is deemed the winner and awarded The Summit League Food Fight trophy.
South Dakota State was the 2015-16 winner, collecting more than 35,000 lbs. of food. The winner of the 2016-17 Food Fight trophy will be announced later this month after final totals are calculated.
In the program's eight completed years, over 473,000 lbs. of food has been collected. South Dakota State has won five titles, including the last four, Oakland has two Food Fight titles, while Southern Utah earned one.
ABOUT FEEDING SOUTH DAKOTA
Feeding South Dakota, whose mission is to eliminate hunger in South Dakota, is the state's largest charitable hunger relief organization. In FY16, Feeding South Dakota secured and distributed over 13.5 million pounds of quality nutritious donated and purchased food providing 11.25 million meals to more than 190,000 individuals in need. Feeding South Dakota is able to distribute this food from our distribution centers in Sioux Falls, Pierre and Rapid City through its network of over 350 charitable organizations across the state. These organizations then provide this food to individuals who are "food insecure" through youth programs, senior centers, on-site feeding programs, emergency food pantries, after school programs, and homeless shelters. For more information on Feeding South Dakota, please visit www.feedingsouthdakota.org, find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.
ABOUT THE SUMMIT LEAGUE
In its fourth decade of Division I athletics, The Summit League offers 19 championship sports and has a combined enrollment of over 120,000 at nine institutions, including four located in top 60 U.S. metro populations and two land-grant universities. Member institutions include: Denver (University of Denver), Fort Wayne (Indiana University-Purdue University-Fort Wayne), IUPUI (Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis), North Dakota State University, Omaha (University of Nebraska Omaha), Oral Roberts University, the University of South Dakota, South Dakota State University and Western Illinois University. Previously known as the Mid-Continent Conference, The Summit League rebranded in 2007 and has since produced eight NCAA Champions along with over 75 Academic All-Americans, 65 All-America selections and numerous former student-athletes competing at the highest professional level. In 2014-15, The Summit League ranked first for NCAA Graduation Success Rate in women's basketball and second in baseball. For more information about the league and to "See The Summit", visit the newly re-designed www.thesummitleague.org website, follow Summit League Basketball on Twitter @summithoops and watch the weekly "Inside The Summit League" show at www.thesummitleague.org/itsl.