From its inception, Thanksgiving has been about people from different walks of life getting together to forge friendships over a bountiful feast, and that tradition continues again this year during The Salvation Army’s community Thanksgiving dinner.
“We do this every year. We plan to feed around 200 people,” said Lt. Jeannie Fanning of The Salvation Army in Kenai.
The dinner, which is free and open to anyone, will be served at the Community Center Building on the corner of Second Avenue and Forest Drive in Kenai from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursday.
Fanning said preparations already are under way for the big meal, which typically includes 10 turkeys and hundreds of pounds of potatoes, corn and other side dishes.
“We buy most of the food and some is also donated,” she said.
Fanning said many people from the community take part in the meal’s preparation.
“The community pitches in and everyone does something.
“We get kids from Cook Inlet (Academy), who come by and peel potatoes and carrots the day before. Gerri Litzenberger and her family do the cooking, along with the Soldotna Rotary that will help out this year.
“We also have lots of volunteers that help serve,” she said.
Fanning said the people who come are diverse mixture. Some are single or don’t have family in the area. Others are married or with families. Incomes are equally variable.
“Anybody is welcome. It doesn’t matter what your finances are or where you live,” she said.
Fanning added the only prerequisites to attend the dinner are a willingness to share in festivities, a desire to break bread together and an inclination to not be alone on the holiday.
For more information, to volunteer time or to donate food, call The Salvation Army at 283-4035 or 283-3879.
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