The Big Fresno Fair announced its continued partnership with Fresno State for the fourth year to lead an on-campus food drive from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 26, to benefit the Fresno State Student Cupboard.

Those who can’t make it to the Feed the Need Food Drive at Fresno State can donate online.

Community members and Fresno State students, staff and faculty are asked to bring 10 or more canned food items per person to Fresno State’s Red Lot (entrance on Barstow Avenue, just west of Cedar Avenue) in exchange for one free admission ticket to The Big Fresno Fair, good for any day.

Food drive participants will also have the opportunity to meet Victor E. Bulldog III, Fresno State First Lady Mary Castro and Fresno State coaches and players who will be giving away football tickets and Maya Cinemas movie tickets at random to participating donors. New Rock 104.1, 940 ESPN, 95.7 The Fox and 99.3 Now FM will broadcast live during the food drive, and Dutch Bros. Coffee will be on hand in the later hours of the event to energize volunteers.

The Fresno State Student Cupboard, an initiative of the Fresno State Food Security Project, provides free food and hygiene items to current Fresno State students in need. Since its inception in November 2014, the Student Cupboard has had more than 11,400 unique student visitors and over 141,500 total visits. During the academic school year, the Student Cupboard serves an average of 4,600 student visitors each month who benefit from free food and hygiene items donated by community organizations or purchased from the Central California Food Bank with donor funding.

“Nearly 44 percent of Fresno State students surveyed suffer from food insecurity, and 81 percent receive some sort of financial aid,” said Dr. Frank Lamas, Fresno State’s vice president for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management. “Food insecurity is not limited to our campus. Universities throughout California are actively working together with their local communities on effective ways to address this crisis including meeting all our students’ basic needs. Providing healthy food assistance and basic needs to support students’ academic success is very high priority. With community support, feeding the growing need is both realistic and possible.”

“Last year the Feed the Need food drive at Fresno State collected 39,500 pounds of food. With the extended hours for the community to donate, we hope to double that amount this year,” said John C. Alkire, CEO of The Big Fresno Fair. “Our agriculture-based fair is proud to partner with Fresno State to provide an incentive for the community to give, and in turn, help student and University success. I encourage the community to join us on Wednesday, Sept. 26, which officially kicks off the 10th anniversary of the overall Save Mart and Food Maxx Feed the Need food drive effort.” For more information, contact Danielle Griffin at 559.994.3133 or Shane Scarfeo at 760.846.1884.