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Hunger walk is added to the Chasco Fiesta

NEW PORT RICHEY — Chasco Fiesta will add a benefit, Hunger Walk for Pasco, on March 15, the weekend before main festivities during the nine-day event.

The walk taking place at Gulf High School will help raise money for the Pack A Sack 4 Kids and Pasco County Elderly Nutrition Programs, said Kelly M. Hackman, executive director of Chasco Fiesta.

More than 36,000 children live in Pasco households that struggle to put food on the table, Hackman said. More than 200 home-bound senior residents remain on a waiting list to get one hot meal a day.

“To fight hunger, don’t just talk the talk, walk the walk,” a flier for the new benefit reads.

The opening ceremony of the walk will start at 9 a.m. Registration has started online. Visit www .chascofiestahungerwalk.org or call (727) 375-8801, ext. 2232.

The 68th annual Chasco Fiesta in downtown New Port Richey will kick into high gear March 21-29.

The event helps 25 area nonprofit organizations raise money by selling food or goods.

At the 2013 Chasco, nonprofit groups raised $245,000 for their organizations. Cami Austin is chairwoman for the 2014 edition.

Chasco will kick off with the 29th annual Chasco Coronation Ball on March 21 when the 2014 King Pithla and Queen Chasco will be crowned. Nominees come from longtime volunteers in the area. The royal couple will preside over the street parade and many other events.

Community favorites will return, such as the Native American Pow Wow, Greg Henry Restoration Chasco Fiesta Street Parade, Ferman Chasco Fiesta Boat Parade and Main Street Mile.

The schedule also includes the Car, Truck and Bike Show, a flea market, tournaments for golf, softball and bowling, and World Famous Bar-B-Qs.

New to this year’s event is a 5K and Fun Run by the Special Olympics, and a physical challenge event called Making the Cut, Hackman said.

Evening entertainment includes concerts featuring Christian, rock ’n’ roll, bluegrass, blues and oldies music, all culminating with the annual Chasco Fiesta Country Concert. Gloriana will headline the March 29 country concert.

For information and a complete list of events and applications, visit www.chascofiesta.com or call (727) 842-7651.

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