SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Generosity was in the air at the Open Pantry in Springfield Friday.

The food pantry received a check for more than $1,000 from Gary Rome Hyundai. The auto group was a presenting sponsor at this year’s Mayflower Marathon. They wanted to make this direct donation to Open Pantry to help them serve the community.

Owner Gary Rome told 22News, “With inflation, it’s critical, the need is critical. It’s wonderful what they do. I wanna help in any way we can, and I want to expand and help them get the recognition they need so other people can donate and contribute.”

In total, the Mayflower Marathon brought over $179,000 to the Open Pantry.

The holiday season is a time for joy, generosity, and gratitude for local food pantries, it’s the busy season. Need across the country is at an all-time high, and local service agencies are feeling the pinch.

Thousands are in need of a good meal, accessible medical care, and a safe, warm place to gather. The Open Pantry aspires to be a one-stop shop for those in need.

“We also have open-door social services which is our health component. There we provide substance abuse counseling, recovery coaching, mental health, and general case management. Then we have a housing component and we provide medical and dental triage. We have a teen parent program on the North End and on top of that, we have our holiday meal program.”