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Farmers Market Vendor Donating Tips to Local Charity

"I've always had philanthropic aspirations," says Brandon Winkler of Wink's Lobster and Seafood.

When Brandon Winkler heard about the overcrowding at San Pedro's Marine Mammal Care Center on the news, he felt he had to act.

"They were having a huge problem with starving seals this week," he told Patch on Sunday. "(I thought), 'You know, this is a timely charity."

Winkler, who has his Wink's Lobster and Seafood booth at the Manhattan Beach Farmers Market every Tuesday, designates a charity to receive all his tips each month. He started his "Tips for a Cause" program about four months ago with a $66 donation for United Friends of Children, and each month, he's raised a little more. March's charity is the Marine Mammal Care Center.

"I'm hoping to get $200," he said.

He decided to start the donation tip jar after people kept trying to tip him. Because he owns his business, he said it didn't feel quite right for him to accept tips.

"I said, 'Well, if people want to give me tips, I'll just donate them," he told Patch. "It's kind of a feel-good thing for me."

Winkler will be selling his lobster rolls and New England clam chowder (as well as accepting donated tips for the Marine Mammal Care Center) at this Tuesday's farmers market. 

For more information, visit the Wink's Lobster & Seafood website. The Manhattan Beach Farmers Market is held downtown Tuesdays from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on 13th Street and Morningside Drive.

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