NORTH ADAMS -- An initiative focused on providing holiday meals to the needy in the Berkshires and Southern Vermont will kick off its third year with a concert tonight.
"Feed Your Mind, Feed A Family," organized by New England Newspapers Inc., in partnership with local agencies including the Salvation Army and the Friendship Center Food Pantry, will hold the concert at 7 p.m. at Desperados, 23 Eagle St. Performing in the concert will be The Brownskin Band, of Syracuse, N.Y., and admission is two, non-perishable food items per person. The food items will be donated to the Friendship Center Food Pantry.
Warren Dews Jr., vice president of circulation for New England Newspapers, said Thursday about 1,500 people have been fed over the last two years through the initiative.
"We're bringing this event to the area because we want the area to be a part of this," he said.
New England Newspapers is the parent company of the North Adams Transcript and its sister newspapers, which include The Berkshire Eagle, the Bennington Banner and several other publications.
During "Feed Your Mind, Feed A Family," which will run through Dec. 16, the Transcript and Stop & Shop Supermarkets will provide turkey dinners to the Salvation Army and the Friendship Center Food Pantry for each new electronic or print subscription sold.
"As our customers feed their minds by reading our paper, they also have a chance to feed a family," Dews said.
Subscription prices for the initiative include a one-year subscription to the Transcript e-edition for $49.85, and a one-year subscription to the print edition for $142.04. Customers currently subscribing to the print edition can add a digital subscription package, which includes the e-edition and full access to the Transcript's website, for $15.
In addition, turkey dinners will be donated for each current subscriber who signs up for the EZ Pay automatic subscription payment.
Chris Oldham, sales and marketing manager for New England Newspapers, said that the initiative has been pretty successful over the last two years, and it has generated a lot of community support.
"We're at the point where we have agencies who are looking to get on board," he said.
Citing information from The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts, Dews said one in eight, or 108,000 people in Western Massachusetts face hunger every day, and one in six, or 32,000 children in Western Massachusetts face hunger every day.
Peter Lynch, publisher of the Transcript and The Advocate, said he hopes the concert at Desperados will build awareness to the needs of families in Northern Berkshire.
"I hope it will be the beginning of people's generosity doing whatever they can personally -- whether it be monetary or donation," he said. "It's never too early to start helping each other out."
To reach Meghan Foley, email