Mayor Brandon Johnson welcomes the new school year on Monday, August 21 when Home Run Inn sends thousands of CPS students home on the first day of school with one of their favorite treats – a pizza. Chicago Police Department and Chicago Fire Department members will distribute 6000 pizzas to students at 25 elementary schools on the South and West sides with support from this popular 76-year-old Chicago business, the Chicago Department of Family and Support Services, and CPS.

Chicago’s First Day: 6000 Free Pizzas for Students

Mayor Johnson will personally hand out the first batch of pizzas, along with the Chicago Police Department, to students at Robinson Elementary School, 4225 S. Lake Park Ave., upon dismissal at 3:00 p.m.


“Our children are our future, and I cherish the opportunity to start the school year off right by handing out one of Chicago’s signature dishes to thousands of our youth,” said Mayor Brandon Johnson. “Thank you to CPD, CFD, DFSS, and Home Run Inn for making this event possible and making our kids’ first day a little brighter.”


The massive food distribution event will be held from 1:30 – 3:00 p.m. at two Chicago Department of Family and Support Services locations: Dr. Martin Luther King Community Service Center, 4314 S Cottage Grove Ave.; and Garfield Community Service Center, 10 South Kedzie Avenue.  A Home Run Inn frozen truck will be parked at each location to house more than 3,000 pizzas for the Chicago Police and Fire Departments to pick up and deliver to children at the neighborhood elementary schools. Every student will receive one HRI cheese pizza.


“We are so excited to continue our partnership with Home Run Inn, Chicago Public Schools, CPD, and CFD to begin the new school year with such a big celebration,” said DFSS Commissioner Brandie Knazze. “DFSS supports children and families throughout the duration of their school-aged experience and beyond. We know that they need to be supported and nourished in many different ways, and this event contributes to that effort. We wish every student a wonderful and productive school year.”


Also, every staff member at the receiving schools will be recognized for their dedication with a personal invitation for a free pizza at any Home Run Inn location. An additional 1000 pizzas will be given to police and fire personnel on hand as well as 500 pizzas to area residents that day at the DFSS Dr. Martin Luther King Community Service Center.


“We’re grateful to Home Run Inn and all our City partners for joining us as we welcome back our families, staff and importantly, our amazing scholars,” said CPS CEO Pedro Martinez. “Starting the year off strong depends on our schools as well as our parents and community members, as exemplified in this generous gift and partnership.”


Home Run Inn, (HRI) is proud to join the Chicago Department of Family and Support Services (DFSS) and Chicago Public Schools (CPS) in addition to the Chicago Police Department (CPD) and Chicago Fire Department (CFD).


“Home Run Inn is thrilled to play a part in brightening the lives of students as they gear up for an exciting new school year,” said Gina (Perrino) Bolger, Senior Vice President and fourth-generation family member of Home Run Inn.


About Department of Support and Family Services (DFSS)

DFSS works with community partners to connect Chicago residents and families to resources that build stability, support their well-being, and empower them to thrive. As the 5th largest City agency and one of the largest social service funders in Chicago, DFSS provides direct services at six Community Service Centers, six Regional Senior Centers, and through partnerships with 350 community-based organizations across the city. In total, DFSS services and funding supports over 400,000 vulnerable Chicagoans each year.

Connect with DFSS on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn

Learn more about DFSS at


About Chicago Public Schools (CPS)

Chicago Public Schools (CPS) is dedicated to providing a high-quality education to all students, beginning with the District’s free full-day preschool programming for four-year-old scholars and continuing through neighborhood, magnet and selective-enrollment elementary schools that provide a rigorous K-8 education with schools that specialize in the fine arts, world language and culture, dual language, STEM, International Baccalaureate (IB), classical programs, and more. The rising District-wide freshmen-on-track and high school graduation rates reflect the hard work of the CPS community, including families, staff, and students across 635 schools. CPS celebrates the diversity of its more than 322,000 students who cite 182 home languages. Learn more about CPS at and connect with CPS on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.

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About Home Run Inn (HRI)

Home Run Inn is considered Chicago’s very own thin crust pizza known for its irresistible flavor, hand-pinched buttery crust, zesty sauce, plentiful cheese and homemade sausage. The small tavern of the 1920’s was named Home Run Inn in 1947. Now, the company has 9 pizzerias throughout the Chicagoland area and frozen pizza is sold across the country. Home Run Inn also is currently the official pizza of the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field and sold at Chicago’s Midway International Airport. Still family-owned and operated, Home Run Inn ranks among the top 10 in pizza brands sold nationally and number one in the Chicagoland area. For further information, visit