Amalie Arena food staff donating meals to Tampa Bay area

The Amalie Arena food staff is staying busy during the coronavirus pandemic by donating meals around the Tampa Bay area.

The Amalie Arena food staff might not have Tampa Bay Lightning games or the NCAA Tournament to cook for right now, but the kitchen is staying open as they donate meals around the Tampa Bay area with the charity Feeding Tampa Bay.

Other restaurants and food brands doing their part to help out include McDonald’s Thank You MealsBusch Beer’s dog-fostering program and Bud Light’s Open for Takeout.

Chef Waylon Nelson and the Amalie Arena food staff are preparing around 2,000 meals per day in a full eight-hour workday,

“This is almost like summer hours for us,” Chef Nelson told the Lightning team website.

Feeding Tampa Bay has been providing some of the food supplies and works to set a base cost per meal, and then it’s up to Nelson to create a meal following those guidelines. Kind of like Top Chef mystery baskets, but on a massive scale.

Some herbs and vegetables used come from the arena’s hydroponic garden.

“Me and my team are ready to do it indefinitely at this point,” Nelson told the team website, and the Amalie Arena food staff will continue to prepare and distribute meals at the current rate until at least the end of May.

it’s unclear right now if the 2019-20 NHL season will be able to finish (or if so, how that could be accomplished safely), but the hockey writers at our sister sites are staying busy, and a Boston sportswriter went viral on Twitter a few weeks ago when she made an exhaustive list of NHL teams as alcohol.

Next: Traveling Food Dude Adam Vosding on his foodie travel adventures

If the playoffs are able to begin, right now Tampa Bay would be locked into the playoffs at second in the Eastern Conference Atlantic Division, with 92 points through 70 games and a record of 43 wins, 21 losses and six overtime losses.

For more general news, information and opinion about the NHL in general and the Lightning in particular, be sure to visit the main FanSided site, general hockey hub Puck Prose and and the Lightning-specific Bolts by the Bay.