Press Releases

Zingerman’s Delicatessen Throws Fundraiser for Peace Neighborhood Center

March 5, 2008
For immediate release
Contact: Pete Sickman-Garner, 734.904.0644

March 13 Event Aims to Raise $20,000 for Local Community Development Organization Ann Arbor, MI—Zingerman’s Delicatessen announces a month long Tournament of Sandwich Champions (ZTOC) beginning February 15 and culminating with a competitive tasting (The Raucous Caucus) on March 13 in the Deli Big Top Tent featuring local music and coinciding with Zingerman’s 26th anniversary. During the Tournament of Sandwich Champions event, Deli customers will have the opportunity to submit votes for their favorite sandwich for a $1 donation to Peace Neighborhood Center.

At The Raucous Caucus event, a drawing will be held and one voter will be awarded Zingerman’s Sandwiches for Life and a ‘Best Zingerman’s Sandwich Ever’ will be crowned. All monies raised during the promotion and event directly benefit The Peace Neighborhood Center which provides critical services and opportunities to more than 12,500 people in Ann Arbor and Washtenaw County. Peace Neighborhood Center Board President Al Newman provided the inspiration for the event.  Deli Director Darin Latimer describes how it all came about:

“Al Newman sat down in 1999 and ordered Sandwich #1 – ‘Whose Greenberg Anyway’? So did lots of people but Al was not just noshing, – he was a culinary Ulysses bravely stepping forth to conquer a continent of cholesterol. First he ate the sandwiches in numerical order (including retired items), rating them 1-10, then, he ate the unnamed sandwiches in alphabetical order doing the same. Then he placed them in an NCAA tournament style bracket and kept going. 10 years and 193 sandwiches later he arrived at his Final Four. For the Tournament of Sandwich Champions, we took inspiration from Al’s quest and together with his crew at Peace designed a twofold fundraising event that would both raise a ton of money for the Center and answer the question boldly put forth by Al – ‘What is the Best Zingerman’s sandwich ever?’

“First we honored Al’s Final Four (#2-Zingerman’s Reuben, #18 Georgia Reuben, #67 Jon and Amy’s Double Dip, and #102 Nathan’s Double Play) by making them automatic bids. Then the public at large is given voice in a month long round of voting (Feb15-Mar 12). For $1.00 a vote a guest can vote (as frequently as they wish) for their favorite sandwich. The top four vote getters are paired up against Al’s quartet. Why would anyone pay a dollar to vote for a sandwich no matter how much they liked it? Well… every dollar buys entry into a drawing to win Zingerman’s Sandwiches for Life…that’s natural life folks, no time limit – one sandwich a month for the duration. And of course, every dollar goes to the Peace Center and is tax-deductible. ‘Chicago-style’ voting is encouraged. If that’s not enough…the winner will have their Zingified portrait and name hung on the Deli wall and receive an exclusive limited-edition-of-One T shirt.

“At the Raucous Caucus on March 13,  the chosen Elite Eight will square off at a  Zingerman’s tasting where attendees will  will taste all 8 sandwiches, argue as much as necessary while grooving to the tunes of our TBD line-up of musical worthies (all featured on the menu). Hosted by a two-dozen strong battalion of Zingernaut’s past and present who are enshrined on the menu, the event runs from 6-9pm in the Big Top behind the Deli and admission is $100. The Sandwiches-for-Life drawing winner and Best Sandwich ever coronation will cap the evening.”

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Zingerman’s Delicatessen was founded in 1982 by Paul Saginaw and Ari Weinzweig. Over the years Zingerman’s has gained a national reputation for their food as well as their customer service. What started as a corner deli has grown into a community of businesses including a training and consulting business, a bakery, creamery, coffee roaster, mail order operation, and full-service sit-down restaurant. In 2003, Inc. magazine declared Zingerman’s Community of Businesses, “the coolest small company in America.”

For nearly four decades, Peace Neighborhood Center has piloted and maintained programs for children, families, and individuals to promote self-sufficiency and positive community involvement. Since 1971, they have provided critical services and opportunities to more than 12,500 people in Ann Arbor and Washtenaw County. Their services include: advocacy, emergency assistance, substance abuse recovery and prevention, after-school programs, summer day camp, college and career preparation, individual and family counseling, and employment assistance.

For details about the free sandwich contest and about the March 13 event, contact Pete Sickman-Garner, Zingerman’s Marketing Manager, at [email protected] or 734.904.0644. For more info on the Peace Neighborhood Center contact Kevin Lill, Director of Development, at [email protected] or 734.662-3564 ext. 15.