The KTK morning team is doing great things for the needy in our community this holiday season!
Fishermen on a Gulfstar Fishing boat hauled in two massive Warsaw grouper late last week and decided, along with partner Northwest Seafood, to give the meat to people in need. After running a contest for patrons to guess the weight of the fish — the grouper on display at Northwest's Millhopper location weighed 271 pounds, and the one at the store's Tioga location was 273 pounds — the two "supergroupers" were cut up and vacuum sealed Thursday.The meat will be distributed to food banks in Alachua and Marion counties.
Food banks don't get a lot of high-quality protein donated, Northwest Seafood co-owner Scott Richardson said. The two fish could yield more than 500 pounds of meat. "That's a lot of fish sandwiches," said Joseph Castellano, a Gulfstar fisherman who caught one of the grouper.
The size of the grouper is a big part of why the fishing company and the seafood store decided to donate the meat.
Deaderick and Richardson got in touch with Storm Roberts of WKTK 98.5 to drum up some more support for the cause.
In response, the radio host launched "Storm and Kathy's Loaves and Fishes Food-Raiser" with co-host Kathy Hess.
The idea is to raise awareness about donating to food banks during the holidays.
"We're trying to do as much good as we can," Roberts said. "I know how badly people need it this time of year."
The two grouper made their way to both Northwest Seafood locations on Monday, one prominently displayed on ice at each store.
Michael Demers, director of development for Bread of the Mighty Food Bank in Gainesville, said the donation is coming just in time for the biggest part of food drive season.
Bread of the Mighty serves Alachua, Dixie, Gilchrist, Levy and Lafayette counties and has about 130 partner programs.
The size of the donation means Bread of the Mighty probably can serve people in all five counties, Demers said.
“Every pound (of fish) is 10 meals," he said. "That's pretty powerful."
Restaurants and other businesses will donate meat from time to time, Demers said, but he's never had anyone donating this much protein in this manner. "We're deeply appreciative of it," he said. "We just think that was a wonderfully creative way for the local community to share their harvest with us — right off the shore, right to the table of those who need it."