MILWAUKEE -- The Big Gig began Wednesday, June 27 at noon when the gates opened at Maier Festival Park, and Summerfest visitors helped the Hunger Task Force, Johnson Controls and FOX6 News "Stomp Out Hunger."
"We are really the flamingo group, and we do a lot of partying together," said Kathy Aulik, from Manitowoc.
"I usually come every year with my friends, just to have fun and listen to new music groups," said Lauren Howard, from Milwaukee.
Some FOX6 faces joined the Hunger Task Force along with volunteers from Johnson Controls to help Stomp Out Hunger.
"Over the prior 12 years, we have collected about 75,000 pounds of food," said Grady Crosby, Johnson Controls vice president of public affairs.
"You can see it's such a special event because so many people are coming down with food and helping out locally hungry families, said Sherrie Tussler, executive director of the Hunger Task Force.
Three non-perishable food items got visitors a free ticket on Summerfest's first day.
"I barely can afford to come here sometimes, so it's honestly helpful for me and the people who are getting this food, so it's a win-win situation," said Avion Solis, Milwaukee resident.
"I think it's an awesome thing that they do every year, and I always participate -- always," said Aulik.
It comes at a crucial point on the calendar. With most students on summer break, there isn't access to school meals for kids in need.
"More than 50,000 people will visit a food pantry in the month of August. Now is the time to donate and you can have fun at Summerfest doing it," said Tussler.
"We just believe in 2018, there shouldn't be a need for any family to go to bed hungry," said Crosby.
With great weather on opening day, officials with the Hunger Task Force hoped to collect somewhere between 50,000-90,000 pounds of food.