Representatives of the front office staff of the Lehigh Valley IronPigs in Allentown are scheduled to head to Lakewood, N.J., today to distribute batteries, toiletries, cleaning products and other goods to Sandy victims.
The organization chose Lakewood, specifically, because of its affiliation to the minor league team there – the Lakewood BlueClaws. The BlueClaws are also a Phillies affiliate and share some common ownership with the IronPigs.
“We relate to them,” said Jon Schaeffer, director of new media for the IronPigs. “We all kind of do similar stuff. We'd like to think others would help us out if we were in such circumstances.”
Schaeffer said the IronPigs, BlueClaws, Reading Phillies and Trenton Phillies staff will all help distribute the items to community members in need.
“While the stadium weathered the storm, the community was hit pretty hard,” he said.
The IronPigs are, of course, currently in their off season, but Schaeffer said fans still showed up at the stadium in droves to make donations to the cause.
“We've received hundreds and hundreds of items,” he said.
A similar drive was organized by the managers of the Allentown Farmers Market.
Many Lehigh Valley businesses also raised cash for the American Red Cross and other groups that area aiding storm victims.
American Bank of Allentown has agreed to match up to $50,000 in donations made through Dec. 31 by employees and customers.
Lehigh Valley Branches of TD Bank were participating in a Coins for Caring effort where customers could donate their change in the banks' Penny Arcade machines with the bank matching up to $100,000 to the Red Cross.
Even the food industry was kicking in with fundraisers. The Menchie's Frozen Yogurt in Allentown held a “Smile After the Storm” fundraiser Nov. 16 where 10 percent of all sales went to help with hurricane relief efforts.
A similar promotion was held at the Bethlehem, Stroudsburg and Wyomissing Moe's Southwest Grill restaurants Nov. 15. The parent company also noted it has donated more than 4,000 burritos and tacos to storm victims.