Community Thanksgiving looking for food donations, volunteers


By OJ Stapleton - ostapleton@newsdemocratleader.com



Thanksgiving is just a few days away and organizers have plans well in hand for the 18th annual Community Thanksgiving Dinner in Russellville, but there are still a few needs to be met.

The two biggest is the donation of side dishes for the meal, and volunteers to help prepare the delivery meals at Stevenson Elementary School on Thanksgiving morning.

The side items that are needed include mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, green beans, dressing and cranberry sauce.

Community Thanksgiving Chairperson Shayna O’Kelley said that if anyone wants to make a side for the meal, that would be great. She just asks that you let organizers know what you plan on bringing so they can plan accordingly. To volunteer to cook a side dish, call 270-726-6207 or email CommunityThanksgiving@yahoo.com.

Organizers are asking that the sides by prepared with enough food for 24 individual servings. Aluminum pans with lids are available to be picked up if you would like to use them.

“Any of the hot sides will need to be dropped off at Stevenson by 9 a.m. on Thanksgiving morning,” O’Kelley said. “We don’t really have space to store any of those overnight, so they need to be brought that morning.”

All the free delivery meals will be prepared in the Stevenson Elementary cafeteria. Last year there was approximately 775 meals that were delivered and O’Kelley expects a similar number this year.

“The more volunteers we have at Stevenson that morning, the quicker and smoother everything goes,” she said. “So if we can get enough people there to help, those workers will be able to get home in time to have their own Thanksgiving meal if that is what their plans are.”

There will be volunteers at Stevenson from about 6:30 a.m. on Thanksgiving day until whenever the facility is clean, which should be no later than 1 p.m.

The traditional sit-down Thanksgiving meal will once again be held at First Presbyterian Church on West Sixth Street in Russellville. It will be from 1-3 p.m.

“If anyone wants to come and help with that too, they can,” O’Kelley said. “But we don’t really need a lot of volunteers for that part of the meal. We need the most help at Stevenson.”

Last year around 100 people ate the sit-down meal at First Presbyterian.

Planning meetings are also scheduled for 7 p.m. on November 16 and 23 at First Presbyterian Church if you would like to get more involved with the event.

Anyone who needs a meal delivered can call 270-726-6207 between now and Tuesday, Nov. 24 at 5 p.m.

“That way we have a solid number of how many meals we will have to deliver and our route planners can get everything organized,” O’Kelley said.

By OJ Stapleton

ostapleton@newsdemocratleader.com

To contact OJ Stapleton, email ostapleton@newsdemocratleader.com or call 270-726-8394.

To contact OJ Stapleton, email ostapleton@newsdemocratleader.com or call 270-726-8394.

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