Fifteenth annual community dinner serves members of the local community
Hoping to provide holiday cheer to members of the local community, the St. Barnabas of the Valley Episcopal Church hosted its 15th annual Thanksgiving Dinner on Nov. 28.
Open to all members of the public regardless of religious affiliation, the free event generally treats upward of 400 individuals to a full-course Thanksgiving dinner complete with turkey, stuffing and pie.
According to event organizers, more than 27 turkeys were deboned and prepared in advance of the event.
“All kinds of people help, all kinds of people donatet and all kinds of people come,” said St. Barnabas Rector Leigh Waggoner. “We’ve had people cooking and deboning turkeyst and we had one woman make 16 gallons of gravy.”
Among the more than 40 volunteers working make this year’s event possible was local resident Michael Maloy, who spoke of the satisfaction that comes from helping with such a special community event.
“I volunteer because this is what Thanksgiving is to me,” said Maloy.
In addition to the many volunteers, a group of community members from all walks of life helped make this year’s dinner a success.
We have seniors, we have people who are alone, we have homeless people, and we have people who just like to be part of the community dinner,” added Waggoner.
Those thankful for the opportunity to enjoy food and camaraderie included Don Fortune, a local man who expressed thanks to members of the local community for making the dinner possible.
“It’s good food and good people,” said Fortune. “There are a lot of hungry people out there who need to eat.”
A truly wonderful event, this year’s community dinner filled many hungry bellies while reminding what makes the Cortez community, as well as the Thanksgiving holiday, so special.