Tonawanda News

The Town

November 15, 2012

Imperial Art Studio holding drive to benefit Food Bank of WNY

Tonawanda News — Just because you donate to the Tats 4 Turkeys food collection program at Imperial Art Studio in the town, doesn’t mean you have to use the gift certificate you get in return for some ink of a turkey on your bicep.

Well, you could, but it’s certainly no requirement.

Those who contribute to the Tats 4 Turkeys or Piercings 4 Poultry food donation to benefit the Food Bank of Western New York at the tattoo shop will get a pretty nice return on their investment.

Participants will receive a $25 gift certificate for a tattoo at Imperial Art Studio in exchange for bringing in a $15 gift certificate to a grocery store — that’s in lieu of a turkey so that, as Imperial owner Gavin Royce puts it, “we don’t end up with a bunch of raw turkeys” at the shop. 

A $25 grocery store gift certificate gets donors a $35 tattoo gift certificate, and five non-perishable food items brought in to help round out Thanksgiving dinner will result in a $25 certificate for a body piercing. The piercing certificate is good for a nose, lip, bellybutton, ear or eyebrow piercing, said Katherine Molinaro, one of the head coordinators of the Niagara Tattoo Expo along with Royce.

Imperial Art Studio is accepting donations through Monday to give them enough time to get food on the tables of some families in need before Thanksgiving on Nov. 22. The shop is working in concert with Terror Technologies, Kenmore-based event promoters who have a penchant for zombie makeup. 

Greg Hinaman, Terror Technologies founder, said he and his zombie crew will work with Imperial Art Studio to cross-promote the food drive by getting bloodied up to stand outside the tattoo shop on Sheridan Drive. The goal is to attract visitors.

“When you’re walking around all bloody looking like a zombie, people ask questions,” Hinaman said with a laugh. “When they find out it’s about charity, a lot of people get interested.”

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