Calgary

Live radio, Santa and YYC Tech donation propel CBC Calgary's Food Bank Drive past $1M

Come hear live radio interviews and music, get a tour of CBC Calgary's's new digs and donate to a good cause as the CBC Calgary Food Bank Drive Blitz Day continues Thursday.

Early morning live broadcast produces surge in donations to food bank fund but the fun continues all day

We did it! CBC Calgary Food Bank Drive blitz a huge success 1:35

Blitz Day at CBC turned into a sack attack — as in sacks full of cash.

At 6 a.m., Calgary Eyeopener hosts David Gray and Angela Knight launched their live 2½-hour broadcast, including special musical guest Tanya Ryan, in the lobby of our new building at 1000 Veteran's Place N.W.

  • Doug Dirks in action at CBC Calgary 
    What happens when you accidentally walk in front of the camera during a live national TV broadcast. 0:29

When the day started, the CBC Calgary Food Bank Drive was a little over halfway toward its goal of raising $1 million.  

By 10 a.m., that total had risen to $1,010,316.29.

One of the most eye-popping cheques came from YYC Tech Gives, which donated $232,005.74.

CBC personalities (from left) David Gray and Doug Dirks, and Calgary Food Bank president and CEO James McAra at the Blitz Day live broadcast of the Calgary Eyeopener. (Alisha Edgelow/CBC)

That came on a morning that included major donations from a variety of Calgary-based companies and institutions, including Norton-Rose Fullbright, RBC, the Fluor Corp., Vista Projects, Calgary Catholic Teachers Charity Association and Cenovus, along with numerous donations from hundreds of individual Calgarians, many of whom hand-delivered them to the studio.

Calgary Eyeopener hosts David Gray and Angela Knight on set in the lobby of the new CBC building, where they hosted a special Blitz Day performance to help raise $1 million for the Calgary Food Bank. (Emily Denooij/CBC )

Santa departed the premises at 9 a.m. but the party continued without him throughout the day at CBC with staff-led tours of the new building (the price of admission was a donation to the food bank), and free coffee and popcorn.

YYCTechgives, seen here with Santa Claus (left) and Calgary Food Bank President and CEO James McAra (right), donated $232,005.74 Thursday to the CBC Calgary Food Bank drive, helping to drive the total raised past $1 million. (Alisha Edgelow/CBC)

Members of the NW Frostbite and Bow Valley Vortex raised $300 and food for the CBC Calgary Food Bank Drive. (Alisha Edgelow, CBC)
  • Catch all the action in real time with our live blog below. On mobile? View the blog here.

At 10:30 a.m., the Calgary Girls' School swung by with two school buses full of 1936 kilos (4270 pounds) worth of food donations. They also stopped by the lobby to sing Christmas Carols.

The live radio continued with The Homestretch and host Doug Dirks, Jenny Howe and the crew, who were joined by local band Son of Ray.

CBC Calgary's Uta Schaffland gets in the holiday spirit at its annual Blitz Day drive to raise money and donations for the Calgary Food Bank. (Alisha Edgelow, CBC)

Donations of food and cash (including debit and credit) were gratefully accepted in the lobby from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. 

Angela Knight with special guest Santa as the annual CBC Calgary Food Bank Drive Blitz Day got underway on Thursday morning. (Emily Denooij/CBC)

Thursday was the last day to donate at Fifth Avenue Place, downtown at 420 Second St. S.W. between 8:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m.

If you couldn't swing by CBC on Thursday, there's still time to donate. We are accepting donations on Friday from 7 a.m. until noon.

CBC Calgary Eyeopener host David Gray does the show in the lobby with help from a live band for Blitz Day as the CBC Calgary Food Bank Drive shoots for $1 million. (Calgary Food Bank)

We are at 1000 Veteran's Place N.W., which is just north of Bowness Road and east of Shaganappi Trail, near Edworthy Park.

We are easily accessible by public transit. Route #1 has a stop just south of our location or you can do a drive by. Pull into the roundabout in front of the building and shoot a text message to 403-921-1248 and we will come out and pick up your food donation.

You can donate online right up until Jan. 1.

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