BALTIMORE -- Adam Jones is well known for his #StayHungry hashtag, and the Orioles center fielder put his love of food and football to good use earlier this month in the fourth annual #StayHungry Purple Tailgate.
The charitable event, which raised $50,000 for the Boys & Girls Club of Baltimore, took place on Nov. 6 and exceeded the earnings of the previous three years combined. Jones' tailgate, featuring food from some of the best restaurants around Baltimore, also had a special musical appearance from the country band LoCash and raffle prizes that included Jones pieing fans.
The day was part of a larger effort for Jones, who has teamed up with the Orioles to help renovate three Boys & Girls Clubs in Baltimore over the past three years, including, most recently, the Webster Kendrick Boys & Girls Club through a $75,000 donation.
"Kids are our future. So leaders need to take a stand and help where they can," said Jones, who was the Orioles' Roberto Clemente Award nominee for his efforts. "[I'm] not asking for people to give every penny they have, but some time and resources go a long way. Invest in your society."
The Orioles have made fighting hunger a prominent initiative as well. The club again teamed up to host the Mayors' Feed the Hungry "sorting day" in Sarasota, Fla., this month. The all-volunteer nonprofit collects and distributes food to local Sarasota people in need, and the annual Thanksgiving Food Drive collects more than 46 tons of non-perishable food items each year.
Additionally, the Orioles' 2016 Food & Funds Drive in June raised more than $27,000 and collected nearly 3,000 pounds of food for Maryland families. United Concordia also presented a check for $10,000 to the Maryland Food Bank during a pregame ceremony in September. The donation supported the Maryland Food Bank's Pack to Give Back event, a state-wide initiative focused on providing meals to families in need for the holidays.
The Orioles and Catholic Relief Services (CRS) Helping Hands, a volunteer meal-packaging program, partnered to host the 10,000 Meal Challenge earlier this year. Together, they helped send more than 20,000 meals to women and children in West Africa, doubling the initial goal.