Tacoma Defiance, Tacoma Rainiers

R Hat R City: Hero Meals

Remember R Hat R City? In November 2019, we donated $5 from every Tacoma Rainiers hat sold to Jason Lee Middle School’s “Watts Up!” solar array project, a venture proposed by three students and their science teacher to put solar panels on the school’s roof to lower emissions and costs. We’re bringing it back starting today, and this time we’re supporting a local organization called Hero Meals.

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In March, restaurants and other retailers were forced to close their doors with no certainty of re-opening. Downtown Tacoma eateries like The Swiss, whose management were coming up on 27 years as the proud owners of the pub, had to make quick, tough decisions when the virus put a stand-still on their industry. For many, it made the most sense to board up their windows and hope that the light at the end of the tunnel comes sooner than later.

Other resilient restaurateurs have found ways to offer takeout and delivery, scratching and clawing their way back to normalcy with the rest of us. For eight Downtown Tacoma restaurants, they’ve discovered a chance to not only keep restaurant families employed, but the frontline heroes of R City fed in a time where food is fuel and there’s a job to do.

Medical professionals, first responders, and grocery store workers were already slammed before our world grinded to a halt. On an “easy” day, nurses work long arduous shifts, firefighters and law enforcement are one call away from being asked to put their life on the line, and grocers, along with countless others in our country, are in constant motion keeping our pantries stocked and our minds at ease.

Members of the We R Tacoma staff helped Downtown Tacoma Partnership deliver Hero Meals from local restaurants to MultiCare.

Tacoma’s frontline heroes, from medical professionals to emergency first responders, grocery store workers and post office employees, are still battling coronavirus every day. Many of our nation’s essential workers are putting in extra-extra-extra hours and don’t have the energy to wake up and pack a lunch before rushing out the door to get back to their high-pressure role. That’s where Hero Meals comes in, an initiative created by Downtown Tacoma Partnership (DTP), UW Tacoma, and those eight downtown Tacoma restaurants who are providing hot meals for R City’s frontline heroes.

Hero Meals provides hundreds of individually packed boxes of food for essential workers every week, and has been doing so since early April. Working with restaurants including The Swiss and The Koi, DTP gathers meals from these eateries and brings them to hospitals, grocery stores and a handful of essential workplaces where the meals can be placed in a break room for an easy grab-and-go lunch or dinner. Hero Meals has been taking online donations for over a month, and every $25 equates to three meals for frontline workers.

Hero Meals is another worthy cause and we want your help to support these dedicated restaurants and the heroes they are feeding. R Hat R City is back, and this time, we’re adding Tacoma Defiance hats to the equation. That means, if you check out the online We R Tacoma Team Store, buy any hat you see, $5 is going straight to Hero Meals, which means Tacoma restaurants stay in business and local workers stay fed.

We’re not all lifesavers, and we have no idea where these frontline workers get the energy and positivity to do their job every day and night. But, if you can, head to the online We R Tacoma Team Store, buy a new Rainiers cap or Defiance hat to rep Tacoma in a time when city pride is so valued. Don that new cap, proudly knowing that you did your part to give back to the restaurant staffs, nurses, doctors, firefighters, law enforcement, grocery store clerks, delivery drivers and other essential workers who, when we socially distanced ourselves from COVID-19, put their masks on, and worked even harder to keep R City safe, and fed.

Always Together. We R Tacoma.

About the Tacoma Rainiers

The Tacoma Rainiers are the Triple-A affiliate of the Seattle Mariners. Tacoma has been a member of the Pacific Coast League since Cheney Stadium opened in 1960, and has been a Mariners affiliate since establishing the Rainiers moniker in 1995.

The most up-to-date news and notes about the Tacoma Rainiers and Cheney Stadium can be found at WeRTacoma.com, or by following the Rainiers on Twitter (@RainiersLand), Instagram (@tacomarainiers) and liking the team on Facebook.

About Tacoma Defiance

Tacoma Defiance is the USL Championship affiliate of reigning MLS Cup Champion Seattle Sounders FC. You can follow The Future of Champions on Twitter (@TACDefiance)Facebook, and Instagram (@tacdefiance). We are #DefiantlyTacoma.

We R Tacoma Team Store

The We R Tacoma Team Store is open, online. Grab your Rainiers gear, your Defiance ‘fit, and follow the team store on Instagram and Twitter.

COVID-19 Information

More information on social distancing and how to prevent the spread of Covid-19 can be found at Tacoma-Pierce County Health. The most up-to-date information on how COVID-19 is affecting events at Cheney Stadium can be found here.

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