Holiday food donations, volunteers sought
Pallavi Agarwal | Highlands TodaySEBRING - Thanksgiving is fast approaching, and groups that host free community meals that day are gearing up to feed those who need a meal.
Published: November 14, 2012
Published: November 14, 2012
They could need some help from the community – from food donations to workers - and are also asking those who plan to eat to sign up so they have an idea of how many to expect.
The Salvation Army's Thanksgiving dinner is from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. the day of Thanksgiving, Nov. 22, at the Salvation Army Church, 120 N. Ridgewood Drive, in downtown Sebring.
Last year they fed 200 people and this year they are preparing for 300, said the Salvation Army's Maj. Bruce Stefanik.
The Thanksgiving dinner is put together entirely through community support, and they still need more dressing, potatoes, string beans, sweet potatoes, rolls, cranberry sauce, pies, cakes and brownies.
Volunteers are also being sought to help out.
Those who plan to eat are being asked for sign up and get free tickets at the Salvation Army offices, 3135 Kenilworth Blvd., Sebring, or by calling them at 385-7548. To donate or volunteer, also call 385-7548.
"We still have a couple of hundred (tickets) left," Stefanik said. However, those who don't sign up but come to eat will not be turned away, he added.
Faith Lutheran Church of Sebring, 2740 Lakeview Drive, is also embarking on its fourth community Thanksgiving dinner this year, set from noon to 3 p.m. on Thanksgiving day in the church's fellowship hall.
According to church secretary Traci Roberts' list, they still need donations of turkeys, pumpkin and pecan pies, and volunteer cooks.
Last year the church fed 200. They are shooting for the same number this year.
The meal is for anyone – singles, couples and families that are alone and in need.
Meals will also be delivered to "shut-ins" or those who cannot come. Alan Jay Automotive has donated two drivers and two vans to deliver food to the shut-ins, she said.
They are asking people who plan to attend or want the meals delivered to make a reservation by Nov. 20. The church can be reached at 385-7848 Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m.
Union Congregational Church is also preparing for its annual Thanksgiving mega ritual, where between 1,350 to 1,400 people will get meals delivered.
The Avon Park church, 106 N. Butler Ave., does not have a sit-down community dinner. Instead, on Thanksgiving, volunteers drive to neighborhoods where meals are needed or deliver food to those who sign up or who are Meals on Wheels clients.
If they see hungry people on a street corner, they stop and hand them food boxes, said the church's executive secretary Angela Springsteen.
"We go to all kinds of neighborhood," she added, from poor areas to where migrants live.
Right now the church needs turkeys, pies, stuffing and workers to help prepare the meals.
"The turkeys and the pies and the stuffing are the hardest thing to fulfill," said Springsteen.
People who need a meal delivered, want to donate or volunteer, should call the church at 453-3345.
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