The annual Can the Griz food drive is officially underway. This year, it goes through 7:30 p.m. on Friday, November 20.

Each year, Montana State University and the University of Montana face off in a friendly competition to see which school can collect the most donations for their local food bank. All off the donations collected for MSU will benefit the Gallatin Valley Food Bank and the families that are in need in our community.

The Cats have canned the Griz for 17 out of the last 20 years. This year we are going for number 18.

On Friday, join Jesse James from MY 103.5 at Town & County Foods in Belgrade. He'll be broadcasting live between 4:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. collecting your donations for Can the Griz. You can also donate to Town & Country locations on 19th Avenue, South 11th, and in Belgrade!

Last year, MSU and Bobcat supporters in Bozeman and beyond donated 230,096 pounds of food and $206,550 to the Gallatin Valley Food Bank. UM supporters raised 213,438 pounds of food plus $208,421 for their food bank.

Can the Griz will be a little different this year due to safety precautions surrounding COVID-19, so the Gallatin Valley Food Bank wants the community to know what is most needed this year ahead of time.

Below is a list of the most needed items this year.

There will be changes to this year’s competition due to the coronavirus pandemic. One change is that the winner will be announced on social media instead of during the Brawl of the Wild football game, due to the Big Sky Conference football season being postponed to the spring because of the pandemic.

You can drop nonperishable food donations of at collection locations throughout Bozeman to support those in need in Gallatin County. Donations directly to the Gallatin Valley Food Bank may be dropped off at its location from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. on weekdays to keep the parking lot open for drive-through food distribution in the afternoon. For a list of drop-off locations throughout Gallatin County, click here.

Large donation drop offs will need to be scheduled in advance with Jon Horn at jhorn@thehrdc.org. Receiving will occur at an off-site location on Thursday and Friday, Nov. 19 and 20. The food bank will be able to receive moderate donations from 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. on Nov. 20.

Monetary donations may also be made directly to the Gallatin County Food Bank by clicking here. Each dollar counts as 1 pound of food.

Bobcat supporters can add their contributions to MSU’s total by telling the food bank their donation is for Can the Griz.