EKS Serves Up Lunch At Trinity Cafe
One Friday afternoon in March, a group of EKS employees headed over to down- town Tampa to serve lunch to the home- less, needy, and working poor at Trinity Cafe. Our employees volunteered as waiters, serving a full three-course lunch to just over 250 patrons in two short hours.
Trinity Cafe has carried a strong presence in Tampa since its opening in 2001, providing at least one meal per day for anyone who walks through the door, no questions asked.
The non-profit organization was created by a local restauranteur who wanted to provide restaurant quality meals to those in need. The head chef of Trinity Cafe has over 40 years of experience in highly rated restaurants in the US and Europe.
Over the past decade, Trinity Cafe has moved into its own building and is quickly approaching one million meals served since its inception.
Volunteers can easily sign up online, and participating in groups (like EKS did) is highly encouraged. If you’d like to know more about Trinity Cafe or donate, visit TrinityCafe.org.
EKS Lends a Helping Hand
In the beginning of the summer, employees of EKS Group spent a weekend in Robles Park partnering with the Tampa Police Department, The Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce and a few other local companies to help rebuild a children’s recreation center. The center was designated by the TPD as the RICH House (Resources in Community Hope) and is designed to provide at-risk children in East Tampa with a safe place to socialize and learn while keeping them off the streets.
The project was spearheaded by the Chamber’s Leadership Tampa Class, which managing partner Adrian Martinez was a member of, and called for a renovation and furnishing of an abandoned building on the edge of Robles Park. The opening of the building received much attention from the local community and media, as Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn and TPD Police Chief Jane Castor headlined the grand opening.
Group employees spent the weekend before the grand opening painting, cleaning, and providing supplies to ensure the project finished on time. The entire building needed to be completely gutted and refurbished, a project that took several weeks to complete. The RICH House was then turned over to the Tampa Police who will keep friendly presence while operating the facility.
This is not the first RICH House in the Tampa Bay area as Sulphur Springs received the first one nearly 10 years ago. Tampa police credit that particular community center for a 65 percent reduction of crime in the area.
EKS Group would like to thank all who volunteered their time and effort to help ensure success of the project.
19th Memorial Walk
Earlier this summer, a large wildfire broke out in Yarnell, Arizona, approximately 90 miles northwest of Phoenix. The fire grew to over 1,000 acres, destroying several homes in the process. Called in to battle the flames was the Granite Mountain Hotshot Crew, an elite unit of firefighters based out of Prescott. During the fight, the winds took an unexpected turn, taking the lives of 19 out of a 20-person crew. It would be the deadliest day for a firefighter since 9/11, capturing the attention of the entire nation.
EKS employee Doug Ring, a part-time firefighter with the Whetstone Fire District, attended the memorials for the 19 fallen firefighters.
“It really hit home” he sad. Doug went home that day with a deep desire to do something for the families and those affected by the tragedy.
He then came up with the idea for the 19th Mile Memorial Walk, an effort to honor the firefighters as well as raise money for the families. Doug has received the support of his fire station in Whetstone and will serve as the ending point for the walk that will start at the Fry Fire Station on Yaqui Drive in Sierra Vista.
Also offering their support is the Cochise County Sheriff’s Office and the Sierra Vista Police Department.
The tentative date for the memorial walk is schedule for October 19th. For information on how to help Doug or donate money for the families of the fallen firefighters, be sure to contact him at 520-508-1420.
Hotshots are considered the best-of-the-best firefighters, designated to be the front line in fighting wildfires around the country. Their primary job is to dig barriers while also clearing brush or anything else that can serve as fuel for the fires. The term “Hotshot” was given since the unit is always at the hottest part of the fire. The tragedy occurred on June 30, 2013.
Ravens Go Clay Hunting
On a cool, overcast Friday, the EKS office in Tampa set out to Land’O’Lakes to shoot clays with the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce. EKS was a Gold Sponsor for the event, which saw a record 130 total shooters participate. Two teams made up of EKS employees competed in the tournament under Team Red Raven and Team Black Raven.
The Red Ravens were Rick Bloomer, Mike Bethea, Pablo Enriquez and Lindsey Natale while the Black Ravens were Adrian Martinez, Brian Busch, Jonathan Miller and Maria Rey. There were two volunteer Ravens, Mariela Monsanto and Nicole Martinez, who helped fire the clays for the shooters throughout the course.
The Black Ravens went on to beat the Red Ravens, as Brian hit the most clays with 34. Jonathan finished second with 25 and both Rick and Pablo hit 22 targets.
The Red Ravens also won the honor of last place team in the event, earning them a barrel full of broken baseball bats donated by the Tampa Bay Rays! Despite the dubious award, Adrian won the grand prize of the event in the raffle, a brand new Mossberg 12-gauge shotgun courtesy of Shooter’s World.
All proceeds from the event went to the Chamber’s Foundation that supports educational and leadership programs.