On the surface, an annual pie-eating contest held in downtown Mount Airy was a fun activity on the Fourth of July.
But as it turns out, there also was a serious side to the recent event, which raised more than $9,000 to aid the Shepherd’s House, the local homeless shelter.
Immediately after an Independence Day parade through the downtown area, a large crowd gathered on Franklin Street to participate in the Third-Annual Pie Eating Contest for Charity hosted by Angela Shur of Miss Angel’s Heavenly Pies.
In addition to the competition that was open to all ages, the event included raffles, concession sales and other activities to raise money for the Shepherd’s House. The final monetary outcome was announced Tuesday by shelter officials.
Shur was “ecstatic” Tuesday afternoon over the results, in both participation and proceeds generated — all of which will go toward the ongoing needs of the homeless facility.
Close to 100 “generous” people took part in the contest itself. “It tripled over last year,” Shur said. “I was ecstatic we had so much support.”
Also announced Tuesday were the raffle winners — Keith Wilmoth of a $1,000 gift card and Idalina Musso, a $1,000 gun package.
Local need keen
Shur said she was glad to play a role in aiding a charitable cause that addresses a clear-cut need in the community — one near and dear to her heart.
“I’ve never been homeless, but I’ve had some friends who were homeless — which really made me target the homeless shelter,” she explained.
“You see them in Mount Airy living in cars,” the business owner said of a local displaced population who takes refuge in such locations, sometimes being too proud to seek shelter services.
The Shepherd’s Center benefits many who are down on their luck and simply need a helping hand to make a fresh start, she added.
Shur said her involvement stems from advice her father once supplied: when one gives something, they get back what they gave twice-fold, and helping people through the pie-eating event delivers a good feeling in return.
Shepherd’s House officials expressed thanks Tuesday to sponsors that underwrote many of the core expenses associated with the July 4 event.
They include Advanced Electronic Services (AES), Coca-Cola of Mount Airy, Dunmore Plantation, Leonard’s USA, Nester Hosiery, 13 Bones, Tar Heel Converter and Workforce Unlimited.
Other major donations of time and event needs were provided by Bear Creek Fudge, B-Dazzle Productions, Cooke Rentals, the Dairy Center, Reeves Community Center and the Willow Glen bed and breakfast establishment.
Many volunteers also helped during the contest, organizers say.
It would easy to rest on the laurels from the Independence Day activity, but Angela Shur is focused on future fundraising efforts.
“I’m really looking forward to next year.”
Tom Joyce may be reached at 336-415-4693 or on Twitter @Me_Reporter.