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Eastern States Exposition donates more than 1,000 pounds of beef to help people in need

(from left to right) Gene Cassidy, president and CEO, Eastern States Exposition; Jeanna Misischia, Parish Cupboard board member; Bob Fastie, executive director, Parish Cupboard; West Springfield Mayor Will Reichelt; Carolyn Maloney, Parish Cupboard board member
Submitted Photo/Eastern States Exposition
(from left to right) Gene Cassidy, president and CEO, Eastern States Exposition; Jeanna Misischia, Parish Cupboard board member; Bob Fastie, executive director, Parish Cupboard; West Springfield Mayor Will Reichelt; Carolyn Maloney, Parish Cupboard board member

The organization that runs the Big E fair has donated about 1,300 pounds of beef to help feed people in need.

Eastern States Exposition bid on and purchased two prize-winning steers at the 4-H Beef Auction at the Big E this past September. They paid about $17,500.

The steers were raised by 4-H members in Connecticut and Rhode Island.

The meat has gone to three local non-profits: the Parish Cupboard in West Springfield as well as Open Pantry and Friends of the Homeless in Springfield.

Eastern States Expo CEO Gene Cassidy said the donation doesn't just help those in need.

"We're helping support youth, who are the future of agriculture in our region," he said. "[We're ] showing some appreciation for their efforts, giving them an incentive to be in the agriculture business, which is very, very difficult."

Vendors at the Big E also donated almost 5,000 pounds of surplus food to places like food pantries and soup kitchens in western Massachusetts.

Before joining New England Public Media, Alden was a producer for the CBS NEWS program 60 Minutes. In that role, he covered topics ranging from art, music and medicine to business, education and politics.

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