UFCW Local 951 Bowl-a-Thon Raises Record-Setting $105,000

January 22, 2024

All money raised benefits union’s charitable foundation

  GRAND RAPIDS, MI — The United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 951 is proud to announce more than $105,000 was raised for the UFCW 951 Foundation through its 10th annual bowl-a-thon, setting a new fundraising record for the event. The UFCW 951 Bowl-a-Thon was held in October and November at 29 different sites throughout the state with more than 250 members and their guests participating.

   The UFCW 951 Foundation is a charitable foundation offering programs helping to improve the lives of the union’s members and their families, including more than $100,000 awarded annually in scholarships and reimbursements. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Foundation awarded approximately $300,000 to members in need in the form of Coronavirus Assistance Relief & Emergency Support (C.A.R.E.S.) Grants.

   “UFCW 951 members came out for the bowl-a-thon in full force to support their fellow members making this year’s event the most successful one yet,” said John Cakmakci, UFCW 951 president. “The Foundation does great things for members and their families, and this record-setting amount of fundraising is indicative of the solidarity we see every day amongst our union brothers and sisters.”

   Cash prizes were awarded to the top two-person fundraising team and the top three two-person bowling teams with the best overall scores. The team of Tammy Hunt and Tania Stebbins, who both work at Kroger Store #887 in Holt, raised $845 and took home a $400 prize.

   “It’s important to me,” said Hunt, who is also a member of the UFCW 951 Executive Board. “It’s always good to give back and help out other people.”

   The first-place bowling team prize went to Toby Arnold and Brent Rappuhn, who work at Meijer Distribution Center #90 in Walker, winning $300 with a score of 781. The second-place team of Justin Rachow and Alan Meisel, from Meijer Store #43 in Saginaw, earned a $250 prize with a score of 768. John VanTil, from Meijer Store #312 in Grand Rapids, and his guest John Bitson, placed third winning $150 with a score of 735.

   “UFCW 951 members look forward to this event each year as it gives them a chance to get together and have some fun while raising money for a great cause,” Cakmakci said. “In addition to the members who participate and raise funds for the cause, we are also truly grateful for the support we receive each year from the businesses and companies sponsoring the bowl-a-thon.”

     Visit www.ufcw951.org to learn more about the UFCW 951 Foundation and the scholarships and reimbursements available to the union’s members and their families.

   Sponsors of the 2023 bowl-a-thon were Baird, Governor Gretchen Whitmer & Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist, Greater Lansing Labor Council, Interactive Studio LLC, JBS, Karmel Law Firm, KASCO Construction, Kent-Ionia Labor Council, Kool Auto Group, Kroger, Meijer, Michigan AFL-CIO, Miller Cohen PLC, Segal, ShindeRock, Teamsters Local 299, UFCW 75, UFCW 99, UFCW 227, UFCW 655, UFCW 700, UFCW 876, UFCW 880, UFCW 881, UFCW 1059, UFCW 3000, UFCW International Union, West Michigan Plumbers Local 174, and Zenith American Solutions.

UFCW 951 is a progressive labor union representing over 28,000 workers across Michigan in a variety of industries including grocery, retail, food processing, pharmacy, and cannabis, who are employed at a variety of companies including Meijer, Kroger, Rite Aid, JBS, JLL, Sunberry Beverages, Polly’s, Harding’s, Heritage Provisioning, and Grandville Roasting & Packaging Plant. The UFCW is the largest private sector union in the United States representing over 1.3 million UFCW members nationwide and UFCW 951 is the largest private sector union in Michigan.