OAKLAND (KCBS) – During a championship series or game, it has become customary for local leaders in each city to make a wager on the results. But for the NBA Finals, the mayors of Oakland and Cleveland are wagering something much more meaningful.
Instead of betting Oakland beer and chocolate against goods from the city of Cleveland, Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf and Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson are using the Finals to feed the hungry in their respective towns.
The two cities are participating in the Food Bank Finals, to see which fan base can donate the most money to their local food bank.
Alameda County Community Food Bank spokesman Michael Altfest said their warehouse is already stuffed with fresh tomatoes and onions, and boxes and bags of packaged goods. But he hopes to have much more by the end of the Finals.
“We had this idea to leverage the passion of the fan bases and really try to create something positive out of the NBA Finals, beyond the Warriors winning,” Altfest said.
Click here to donate to the Alameda County Food Bank Finals
Whichever team’s fans donate the most money to their local food banks will be declared the winner, regardless of which team comes out on top. Alameda County has set up a virtual food drive on its website.
“We’ll tally that over the course of the Finals and probably do a little trash talking with the Cleveland Food Bank,” Altfest said. “But at the end of the day, it’s all for a good cause.”
The Alameda County Food Bank and Greater Cleveland Food Bank are both hoping to raise at least $5,000 by the end of the Finals.