Photo by John Andrews / Social Palates
Local gay pride group Go Out Loud kicked off its month-long "Give Out Loud" campaign to collect food donations for the Salem Pantry on November 29, collecting over 660 non-perishable food items in one night.
The "Holiday Out Loud" event, held at Victoria Station on Pickering Wharf last Thursday, attracted more than 200 attendees, including local elected officials, and recently elected Governor's Councilor Eileen Duff, the state's highest ranking LGBT elected official. Donations will be collected throughout the month and distributed to designated food pantries throughout the region.
"We are extremely thankful for the community efforts undertaken by Go Out Loud," Tom Gifford, president of the Salem Pantry, said in a statement. "The Salem Pantry is especially in need during the holiday season and we feel blessed by this charitable campaign."
Many guests dressed in "ugly" sweaters for the "Out Loud Sweater" contest, in which participants have a chance to win a prize package from the Regatta Pub at the Salem Waterfront Hotel through a vote on the Salem Out Loud Facebook page. The event drew so much fanfare, restaurant management had to close off both sides of Victoria Station, the dining room and the bar area, to accommodate everyone who arrived for "Holiday Out Loud."
The month-long "Give Out Loud" campaign rewards donors throughout Salem with a Go Out Loud (GOLD) Discount Holiday Pride Pass, which offers discounts and special offers at local business. The list of participating businesses can be found here.