Feed Entire Kentucky Town Ahead of Thanksgiving
Matthew McConaughey and Wild Turkey® gave thanks to the bourbon brand’s hometown by delivering 4,500 turkeys to the residents of Lawrenceburg, KY, including donating more than 500 turkeys to the local food pantry, just in time for Thanksgiving. Along with a team of more than 250 Wild Turkey volunteers, the Academy Award®-winning actor surprised Lawrenceburg residents by showing up on their doorsteps with turkeys generously donated by Butterball®.
On November 4, McConaughey, who serves as the brand’s Creative Director, celebrated his 48th birthday by making a surprise appearance at the Wild Turkey Distillery as Master Distillers Jimmy and Eddie Russell and an army of volunteers and distillery workers set out to say thanks to the small town that has been home to the iconic bourbon distillery for more than a century. McConaughey got the crowd excited for a day of service, saying, “We believe, in our family, that the more you’re thankful for, the more you’re going to create in your life to be thankful for. So thank you for being here. Let’s go make some people happy!”
View the video Wild Turkey Gives Back video chronicling the effort to feed an entire rural town.
“In one of our very first conversations, Master Distillers Jimmy and Eddie Russell told me that the town of Lawrenceburg is what keeps the Wild Turkey family running,” said McConaughey, Creative Director of Wild Turkey. “The support system in this community is amazing – in one form or another, everyone has some kind of relationship with Wild Turkey – and that’s why we were so grateful to have the resources to give back and say thanks to Lawrenceburg residents. We thought, let’s give everyone a turkey, one less thing for them to worry about this season.”
Following the pep speech, McConaughey and the volunteers set out in cars and buses with more than 60,000 pounds of turkey to canvas Lawrenceburg’s six square miles. Crews blanketed each neighborhood on foot from sun up until sun down, going door to door to drop off the frozen birds, delighting everyone along the way. Scores of residents opened their doors to find McConaughey on their porches, which elicited the kind of excitement you might expect when being surprised by an Oscar winner carrying a turkey.
As the holiday cheer spread through the small town, shocked members of the community took to social media to share their sightings of McConaughey and express deep thanks for the kind gesture from Wild Turkey and the troop of volunteers that delivered a turkey to every single home.
“Lawrenceburg has been our home for generations, and the people who live here support our passion for making great whiskey every day,” said Wild Turkey Master Distiller Jimmy Russell. “We wanted to say thanks to Lawrenceburg this Thanksgiving and to encourage people around the country to do what they can to assure no one goes hungry this holiday.”
In addition to the deliveries in Lawrenceburg, and in the spirit of giving back, Wild Turkey has also made a donation equaling 50,000 Thanksgiving meals to the anti-hunger organization Share Our Strength to help families in need across the country. Wild Turkey is encouraging fans to join them in their Friendsgiving to End Hunger campaign (strength.org/WildTurkey) to support those who could use a hand this holiday. Fans can host a Friendsgiving fundraiser in their own hometown or make a donation to support Share Our Strength’s work to end hunger in America.
“Wild Turkey and Matthew McConaughey’s commitment to the community really touched us and we were happy to join together to help the cause,” says Bill Klump, Chief Marketing Officer of Butterball. “Everyone deserves a great meal on Thanksgiving and Butterball is proud to be able to help put a meal on a table for any family that might otherwise not be able to enjoy one.”
Butterball is committed to giving back to deserving families and community organizations across the country each Thanksgiving and throughout the year. Butterball has donated more than 100,000 pounds of turkey for the 2017 holiday season, in addition to their donation of turkeys to local Lawrenceburg residents, and continues to do what they can to help families, as well as deserving community members, enjoy a Thanksgiving meal.
Wild Turkey first connected with McConaughey a few years ago upon his inaugural visit to the iconic Kentucky distillery where he was introduced to the Russells – the Kentucky Bourbon Hall of Fame® father and son Master Distiller team who have worked at the Wild Turkey Distillery for more than 100 years collectively. Intrigued by the multi-generational family behind the bourbon, McConaughey discovered Wild Turkey’s faithful devotion to distilling bourbon the right, unapologetic way. He later signed on as Creative Director and has since helped tell the brand’s story via advertising campaigns and other projects.
About Matthew McConaughey
Texas native Matthew McConaughey is one of Hollywood’s most sought-after leading men. A chance meeting in Austin with casting director and producer Don Phillips led him to director Richard Linklater, who launched the actor’s career in the cult classic “Dazed and Confused.” Since then, he has appeared in over 40 feature films that have grossed over $1 billion; and has become a producer, director, and philanthropist – all the while sticking to his Texas roots and “jk livin” philosophy.
2014 was a game-changing year for McConaughey. For his riveting portrayal of Ron Woodruff in “Dallas Buyers Club,” McConaughey received an Academy Award®, Golden Globe Award, Screen Actors Guild Award and Gotham Award for Best Actor, the Best Actor Award at the Rome Film Festival as well as the Desert Palm Achievement Actor Award at the Palm Springs Film Festival. He also made the move to TV starring alongside Woody Harrelson in the HBO dramatic series “True Detective.” The show was met by rave reviews from critics and fans alike and earned Matthew a Critics Choice and TCA Award for Best Actor in a Drama Series as well as an Emmy Nomination. McConaughey can next be seen in “White Boy Rick” and opposite Anne Hathaway in “Serenity”.
In 2008, Mr. McConaughey started The just keep livin Foundation (www.jklivinfoundation.org), which is dedicated to helping boys and girls transform into men and women through programs that teach the importance of decision-making, health, education, and active living. The Foundation has partnered with Communities in Schools (CIS) – the nation’s largest, non-profit, dropout-prevention organization –in West Los Angeles to implement fitness and wellness programs in two large urban high schools. Through an afterschool program, they are able to give kids a healthy start in life and the promise of a healthy future.
About Wild Turkey
The Distillery for Wild Turkey Bourbon is located in Kentucky, situated on a deep limestone shelf on the Kentucky River. The shelf acts as a natural filter and provides the distillery with crystal clear water, vital to making such a high-quality product. Wild Turkey features the legendary father and son Master Distilling team of Jimmy and Eddie Russell, who have nearly 100 years of collective experience working at the Wild Turkey distillery.
The famous Wild Turkey brand name first came about back in 1940 when distillery executive Thomas McCarthey took a few warehouse samples on a Wild Turkey hunting trip with a group of friends. The following year, his friends asked him for “some of that Wild Turkey whiskey” and the brand was born.
Wild Turkey is distilled and put into new oak barrels at a much lower ABV than most bourbons. This results in a much richer flavor, as less is cooked out during the production process. Ageing in the highest quality new American oak barrels with the heaviest char available (the Number 4 “alligator” char), imparts a smooth flavor and deep amber color to the whiskey.
The barrels are filled at the distillery in Lawrenceburg, Kentucky. Website: wildturkey.com
About Gruppo Campari
Gruppo Campari is a major player in the global spirits industry, with a portfolio of over 50 premium and super premium brands, spreading across Global, Regional and Local priorities. Global Priorities, the Group’s key focus, include Aperol, Appleton Estate, Campari, SKYY, Wild Turkey and Grand Marnier. The Group was founded in 1860 and today is the sixth-largest player worldwide in the premium spirits industry. It has a global distribution reach, trading in over 190 nations around the world with leading positions in Europe and the Americas. The Group’s growth strategy aims to combine organic growth through strong brand building and external growth via selective acquisitions of brands and businesses.
Headquartered in Milan, Italy, Campari owns 18 plants worldwide and has its own distribution network in 20 countries. The Group employs approximately 4,000 people. The shares of the parent company Davide Campari-Milano S.p.A. (Reuters CPRI.MI – Bloomberg CPR IM) have been listed on the Italian Stock Exchange since 2001. For more information: www.camparigroup.com/en
Please enjoy our brands responsibly.
Headquartered in Garner, N.C., Butterball is the largest producer of turkey products in the U.S. – producing more than 1 billion pounds of turkey each year. For more than 60 years, the company has provided foodservice and retail products to customers and consumers around the world. As an industry leader in quality, food safety, and animal well-being, the company employs numerous processes to ensure the health of flocks and implements recognized prevention measures to exceed food safety standards. Butterball products are currently distributed throughout the U.S. and in more than 45 countries. Butterball operates seven processing plants located in North Carolina, Arkansas, and Missouri.
For consumer questions or information, please visit Butterball.com or call 1-800-BUTTERBALL (1-800-288-8372).
About Share Our Strength
Share Our Strength was founded on the belief that everyone has a strength to share in the global fight against hunger and poverty, and that in these shared strengths lie solutions. Thirty years later, the organization has raised more than $604 million to combat hunger and poverty and is renowned for finding scalable, pragmatic solutions to social problems. Today, Share Our Strength is focused on ending hunger in America.