Zephyrhills Chamber Presents $14,250 to Local Service Organizations and Scholarships : NatureCoaster.com accessibility restaurant explore domain room_service shopping_basket arrow-circle-right search instagram linkedin yelp twitter youtube star facebook Trip Advisor

Zephyrhills Chamber Presents $14,250 to Local Service Organizations and Scholarships

By Florida's Original NatureCoaster™ Posted on March 4, 2020

The Greater Zephyrhills Chamber of Commerce presented a combined $14,250 in donations to local youth groups, civic clubs, and scholarships at the 10th Annual “Pigz Pay it Forward Dinner” on February 27, 2020.  More than 135 attended the dinner held at Alice Hall Community Center.

This night marked a milestone for Pigz in Z’Hills and the Chamber because through this event more than $100,000 has been given back to the community. The Chamber hosts this dinner every year to recognize volunteers and sponsors for their contribution to the Chamber’s signature event, Pigz in Z’Hills BBQ & Blues Fest.

Attendance at this year’s 10th Annual event held on Saturday, January 18th at the Zephyrhills Airport Venue, was counted at more than 11,000.

“An event this size doesn’t just happen,” said Melonie Monson, Executive Director. “It takes thousands of volunteer hours and an amazing community with the heart to give, to pull this off. To know that in 10 years we have given over $100,000 back our community makes all the hard work worth it!” 

Through Pigz in Z’Hills, this year the Chamber was able to ‘Pay It Forward’ to  Pasco County Sheriff’s Posse, Zephyrhills Army JROTC, ZHS Athletic Boosters Club,  Zephyrhills Museum of Military History, Zephyrhills Noon Rotary, Arts in Motion, East Pasco YMCA, Restored Hope, Resurrection House Mission and the Zephyrhills/Wesley Chapel Ministerial Association.

Pigz Pays it Forward reaches $100,000 in Donations to Community and Scholarships

Monson announced through the funds raised, the Chamber will be giving out $5,000 in scholarships to ZHS graduating seniors this year which will include: A Performing Arts Scholarship of $1,000, a Turn Around Scholarship of $1,000 and six Academic Scholarships.

Laughter could be heard throughout as the chamber staff emerged from the backroom wearing boxing gloves and danced to, “I need a Hero” by Bonnie Taylor, to celebrate some “Unsung Heroes” of this year’s volunteers.

Special Recognition Awards

“We wanted to recognize some individuals who went above and beyond to make this event a huge success,” stated Monson. Ten volunteers, Calvin Dickinson, Jack Miller, Al Stone, Erica Holden, Melissa Fraley, Stephanie Egan, Helen Mines, Rod Rehrig, Marvin, and Karen Matteson were called up and given gift certificates to the Zephyrhills Brewing Company and some Pigz Swag.

Eight team leads were recognized with signs that described their personalities like “My Grill is Hot, Hot, Hot!” which was given to Randy Light for cooking the volunteer lunch and “You can’t handle my sauce!” that was presented to Kym Corkum of the Sheriff’s Posse for her spicy way of taking charge.

Bob Hartwig receives a thank you from Director Melonie Monson. Image courtesy of Zephyrhills Chamber of Commerce.

The crowd erupted with laughter as Bob Hartwig, affectionally named BOSSMAN BOB, took his gifts and sign “BBQ naked and show off your buns” for his countless hours spent on logistics.

A thank you and Pigz in Z’Hills shirts were given to Charley Fraley, President of the Zephyrhills JROTC Booster Club, who spent days working on parking; Chris Drews of Pasco News Publications, who single-handedly took control of the car show; and Mike Prenderville of SONG Printing, who took the beer truck on with Noon Rotary. “These guys were ready to solve any problems that might arise and were always there when we needed them,” shared Monson.

A fantastic dinner serve by the Chamber Board of pot roast, mashed potatoes, green beans and rolls was donated by Golden Corral of Zephyrhills. The chamber staff and board of directors enjoyed thanking the many volunteers and sponsors who made the event such a success. Monson also thanked Victor Gutierrez owner of PuroClean and Randy Light of Light the Grill.  She stated, “This year Victor donated all the food for the volunteers on Saturday and Randy not only competed that day but cooked for all of you! How great was that?”

11th Annual Pigz in Z’hills date set for January 16, 2021

The night was wrapped up with Monson expressing sincere gratitude for living in a wonderful community that is willing to share of their time and talent, and an invitation to come and be a part of our 11th Annual Pigz in Z’Hills on Saturday, January 16, 2021.

The 10th Annual Pigz in Z’Hills BBQ & Blues Fest was a Florida’s Sports Coast partner and is presented by the Zephyrhills Chamber of Commerce in partnership with the City of Zephyrhills, Zephyrhills Airport, Avcon, AdventHealth Zephyrhills,  Puro Clean, Suncoast Credit Union, CenterState Bank, American Infrastructure Development, Pasco News Publication, Sonny’s BBQ, Tampa Bay Times, Tampa Type & Print, The Laker/Lutz News, Bahr’s Propane Gas & AC, and Jarrett Ford.

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