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Source: Sycuan  Band of the Kumeyaay Nation

Photo, left to right:  Tribal Council Member Willie Tucker, Jr., Tribal Treasurer Briana Scharnow, Tribal Chairman Cody J. Martinez, Tribal Council Member Nathan LaBrake, Tribal Council Member Jamie LaBrake, Padres Friar

November 16, 2023 (National City) Today, the Sycuan Band of the Kumeyaay Nation in partnership with the San Diego Padres and the National School District donated 1,000 free turkeys to families living in National City. The donation comes in advance of the Thanksgiving holiday as a way to give back to the community.

“With the cost of groceries, fuel, housing and many basic necessities on the rise, it’s been a really tough year for many people,” said Cody Martinez, Chairman, Sycuan Band of the Kumeyaay Nation. “Through the Kumeyaay spirit of giving, we wanted to figure out a way to directly support the hardworking families in our community. We hope this donation provides a little bit of relief and spreads holiday cheer to those that need it most.”

Families that received a turkey have a child that is currently enrolled at one of the 10 public schools within the National School District, Preschool Center, Integrity Charter School, Sweetwater High School, National City Middle School or Granger Junior High School.

“This incredible donation from the Sycuan Band of the Kumeyaay Nation, made possible through our partnership with the National City Chamber of Commerce, is a wonderful example of communities supporting each other and illuminating the true spirit of Thanksgiving,” affirmed National School District Board President Alma Sarmiento.

Members of the Sycuan Tribal Council, the National School District Superintendent and Board President and alumni San Diego Padres players including Mark Loretta, Brian Lawrence and Greg Garcia were on-site helping with distribution.

“As we begin the holiday season, the Padres are proud to partner with the Sycuan Band of the Kumeyaay Nation and the National School District to provide Thanksgiving turkeys for families in our community,” said Erik Greupner, Padres CEO. “We are thankful for the opportunity to directly connect with families in National City.”

About Sycuan Band of the Kumeyaay Nation 

Members of the Sycuan Band of the Kumeyaay Nation have resided in and around the foothills of the Dehesa Valley for more than 12,000 years. Today they are a modern government providing public services to their members, employees and neighbors. The Sycuan Tribal Government operates one of the region’s premier Indian gaming and resort facilities, Sycuan Casino Resort. The Sycuan Tribe demonstrates its strong commitment to the San Diego region through the support of hundreds of civic and charitable organizations.

The Tribe also seeks to reinvest back into the San Diego community with a progressive business development and diversification effort. The tribe is a major investor in and owner of the 30th Major League Soccer (MLS) team that was awarded to the city of San Diego in 2023, becoming the first native American tribe to be part-owner of any men’s major league sports franchise. They purchased the former Singing Hills Country Club and the historic U.S. Grant Hotel; developed the Marina Gateway Hotel and Conference Center in National City; and constructed and operates the Sycuan Market and convenience store. Combined, these enterprises now employ nearly 3,500 San Diegans. For more information on Sycuan visit

About the Padres Foundation

The Padres Foundation, established in 1995, is the primary source of funding for the club's outreach initiatives in the areas of children's health and wellness, education, youth baseball/softball, military and first responders. The Foundation raises funds through a number of programs throughout the year in which fans can participate, including Dinner on the Diamond, the 50/50 Raffle, Shirts Off Their Backs, Fantasy Camp, Garage Sale, Online Auctions and many others. For more information on the Padres Foundation, including how you can get involved, visit


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