By Ryan Bailey

The club’s new community initiative begins by helping to provide over 800 meals for the local community

CHARLOTTE — Local food vendors and community organizations in the Queen City have become the first to benefit from Charlotte FC’s brand-new Small Business Spotlight program.

The initiative aims to highlight, champion and support small businesses across the Carolinas. In honor of Black History Month, the club has kickstarted the program by purchasing over 800 meals from Black-owned local food vendors. The lunches and dinners will be donated to the club’s local community partners, who will in turn distribute them to families served by these nonprofit organizations.

The first small businesses to partner with Charlotte FC in the program are Black-owned restaurants and food trucks across Charlotte:

Romeo’s Vegan Burgers
Scratch Kitchen CLT
Another Food Truck
V’Crave Vegan
Lulu’s Maryland Style Chicken & Seafood

“The Small Business Spotlight program is part of Charlotte FC’s mission to affect positive social change across the Carolinas,” says Charlotte FC President Nick Kelly. “We are pleased to begin the initiative in partnership with a selection of the city’s black-owned food vendors, who are crucially important to the local economy and the respective communities they serve.”

Scratch Kitchen owner Danielle Phoenix

Scratch Kitchen, which provides food for the Armored Cow Brewery in the University area, serves a variety of made-from-scratch items including wings, salads and popular brunch staples.

“My staff are really excited about the program,” says Danielle Phoenix, owner of Scratch Kitchen. “I’ve even had people volunteering their time to help us out, so we’ll be able to feed a lot more families.”

The in-demand vendor, which employs five people, has a history of outreach efforts, which Phoenix encourages as a means of connecting with the local community.

“A few years ago we went out and served the homeless—and it was a great feeling to be able to provide for the less fortunate,” says Phoenix. “I hope it is something we will continue to do in the future.”

Charlotte FC lead and founding partner Ally is proud to join the club in the Small Business Spotlight program.

“It has been hard for small businesses trying to survive the pandemic and particularly for Black and other minority-owned businesses,” said Andrea Brimmer, chief marketing and public relations officer, Ally. “Delivering meals to these local organizations is just another step in Ally and Charlotte FC’s support for the community.”

Another Food Truck owner and executive chef Anthony Denning Jr.

Another Food Truck—which can be found serving neighborhoods, breweries and apartment complexes across the city—provides a variety of food truck staples, including shrimp tacos, Nashville hot chicken sandwiches and their signature ‘Not Your Daddy’s Ribs.’

“This program will be really helpful,” says Another Food Truck owner and executive chef Anthony Denning Jr. “Me and a few other chefs were talking about putting something together to feed people in the midst of Covid, which has brought widespread struggle to our community. This program has come at the right time and I think it will be good to give back.”