Healthy Acadia Food Programs Manager Regina Grabrovac at Four Corners Shop n Save in Columbia. (Courtesy of Healthy Acadia)

Thanks to the incredible generosity of community members across Washington County, this year’s annual Turkey-A-Thon was another huge success. At the close of the daylong event, donations totaled $39,130 — exceeding the partner’s fundraising goal of $36,000 — and with donations still coming in, the countywide event is shaping up to have its biggest year ever.

“Once again, the Turkey-A-Thon was a record-breaker!,” said Healthy Acadia Food Programs Manager Regina Grabrovac. “For five years running now, it has exceeded our goal, and most importantly, has demonstrated so perfectly the generosity of this community to give.”

On Friday, Oct. 7 teams of enthusiastic volunteers from local schools, businesses, organizations, and the community at large, together with employees from Classic Hits 92.7/95.3 FM Radio, Dunkin’ in Calais and Machias, V.L. Tammaro in Calais and Baileyville, and Healthy Acadia, were stationed at seven sites across Washington County to collect donations for local food pantries. All funds raised through this annual event are distributed to community food security organizations.

Classic Hits 92.7/95.3 FM Radio, broadcasting live from the Dunkin’ studio at V.L Tammaro in Calais, kept the momentum going throughout the day, encouraging a little friendly competition as collection sites reported their tallies hourly via phone. The team at Healthy Acadia honors and celebrates Jeff Demmons, Account Executive with WQDY, Inc. and the co-coordinator of the annual Turkey-A-Thon since its inception, for his incredible leadership, partnership, and enthusiasm. After another successful event, he will be enjoying his retirement from WQDY-FM (Calais), effective Oct. 7, but will still be involved with Turkey-A-Thon.

“With this being the last official year with Jeff Demmons at the on-the-air helm, we are super grateful for his incredible dedication to making this event a success each and every year,” said Grabrovac. “And we are looking forward to Jeff being the on-air voice in his new role as a volunteer!” Congratulations, Jeff, and thank you for all you have done, and continue to do, for our community.  

Every dollar raised through the Turkey-A-Thon will be used to purchase gift certificates from local grocery stores that will be distributed among the ten Washington County food pantries, as well as emergency school backpack programs and other food cupboards. The gift certificates will help ensure that local families in need enjoy a healthy holiday meal. Community members can support their local food pantry by donating directly any time of the year.

Classic Hits 92.7/95.3, Dunkin’ in Calais and Machias, VL Tammaro in Woodland and in Calais, and Healthy Acadia would like to thank all those who generously donated and/or volunteered their time during the event. 

“At one site, we raised nearly $2,000, and 75% of that was in one to three-dollar donations. Nearly everyone gave what they could. Every donation counts! Every site had 10-12 volunteers helping out with their time. Thanks also to the schools that participated in the Taters and Gravy fundraiser. Calais Jr/Sr High School takes the trophy for 2022 with over $1,100 raised. Thank you, Student Council!”

If your school would like to get involved in the Taters and Gravy fundraiser for the 2023 Turkey-A-Thon, please contact Regina Grabrovac at Healthy Acadia at 207-255-3741 or regina@healthyacadia.org. 


Healthy Acadia is a 501(C)(3) community health organization building vibrant communities and making it easier for all people to lead healthy lives throughout Washington and Hancock counties. For more information about Healthy Acadia’s efforts to address food insecurity and other health initiatives, visit www.healthyacadia.org.