New Yorkers love their pizza. From the crisp, charred crust of a coal-fired pizza to the piquant tomato sauce bubbling on a Neapolitan pie to the classic, foldable slice often devoured as one hurries down a bustling street, this city has it all. But with the glut of options in this pizza heaven, it can take years of trial-and-error ordering to find your go-to spot. If you want to fast-track the process and contribute to a worthy cause, check out New York’s biggest pizza party: Slice Out Hunger. Hosted at St. Anthony of Padua Church, the event is just a quick walk from the 70 Charlton Soho residences, and presents an opportunity to join with your neighbors not only to eat some of the city’s best pizza, but to battle hunger in the city.
How does it work? On Oct. 3, more than 50 pizzerias will donate upwards of 1,700 pizzas to Slice Out Hunger, and set up shop in St. Anthony of Padua Church on 155 Sullivan Street. Attendees will line up outside, and upon entry, be able to purchase up to 10 $1 red tickets, each of which can be exchanged for a slice of pizza, and an unlimited number of $1 blue tickets, which can be used to get desserts, drinks, and raffle prizes. Organizers ask only that guests limit their choices to one slice per pizzeria and make their selections during a single circuit around the room.
Slice Out Hunger makes use of the GreenBox, an innovative pizza box that first rose to fame after appearing on the show “Shark Tank.” The top of the GreenBox is easily broken into four sturdy plates, which means you won’t have to do any washing up after sharing your pizza with friends. The box also folds into a storage container for leftovers that won’t take up an entire shelf in your refrigerator — it’s no secret that pizza is just as good, if not better, the next day. At the event, you simply take your box and make your way through the buffet-style setup, assembling your own custom pizza from slices offered by the shops you’ve always wanted to try as well as ones you’ve never heard of. Many of the pizzerias participating in Slice Out Hunger don’t normally serve by the slice, so it’s a unique opportunity to try something new without committing to a whole pie.
The chance to sample slices from more than 50 of the city’s best pizzerias comes but once a year. But the best part of the night isn’t the pizza. It’s the fact that every dollar goes to benefit groups that are actively working to fight hunger in the city. The event seeks to find “a way to harness the momentum of our collective pizza obsession to effectively support those who have trouble meeting their own basic food needs.” Last year, the party raised $70,000 in just three hours. This year, the proceeds will benefit Citymeals on Wheels. The organization delivers meals to homebound elderly New Yorkers in all five boroughs, the majority of whom live alone. Besides ensuring that our aging neighbors don’t go without nutritious food, the volunteers at Citymeals also offer a measure of companionship to people living in isolation.
In short, Slice Out Hunger combines two tried-and-true New York traditions: eating pizza and looking out for your neighbors. Doors open at 6 p.m. and stay open until the pizza is gone.