Las Vegas has seen an outpouring of support from residents wanting to volunteer or give blood in an effort to help in the wake of Sunday’s beyond tragic mass shooting. In a town that has as many great restaurants as it does casinos, chefs have found a way to help in a big way too. From gourmet meals to pizza pies, first responders are being inundated with good food to keep them going while they work to heal and save the hundreds of victims still hospitalized after the brutal attack.
Today reports the efforts that are now underway to coordinate food plans as a way to make sure the meals are spaced out and getting to where they need to be. In the beginning, chefs began cooking and sending out food immediately. Eric Gladstone, who has been helping coordinate donation efforts, explains that the initial response to send food happened very quickly after the tragedy. Gladstone says, “The outpouring has been instantaneous and intense. Las Vegas has this reputation of a being cold-hearted town — an 'all-for-me' town.
Tons of food donations from local restauranteurs have been showing up at police stations, hospitals, victims and their families daily. And now with the added help of Las Vegas-based writer Jason Harris and Jolene Mannina, a local hospitality industry professional, there are more organized efforts to make sure food is getting places at the right times and to the right people who need it.
It may seem unimportant, but for those who are dealing with the tragedy or working long hours to help victims - having a warm meal at the ready can be a huge support. Gladstone explains, “For sure, there is a healing quality to food. It has the unique ability to bring everyone together—it transcends politics, everything.”
And it’s not just the local chefs in Vegas that are feeding first responders. Branden Powers, managing partner of Vegas’ Evel Pie pizza restaurant says he’s been taking delivery calls from people all over the country sending out pies to first responders.
What do you think of the efforts made by local chefs to feed victims and first responders in the days after the tragedy?