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Community Thanksgiving Dinner returns to roots with pandemic-friendly spin

Published: Nov. 25, 2021 at 4:09 PM CST
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - One year after limiting itself to a Hungry Man meal distribution, the 54th annual Community Thanksgiving Dinner returned to its roots with a pandemic-friendly twist.

A team of over 600 volunteers came together Thursday to prepare and make 3,300 deliveries to those who requested a hot meal.

“It’s real nice to get back to our home cooked meal the warm meal out to everyone.” Community Thanksgiving Dinner Association President David Braun said. “It just feels really good and the community didn’t forget us so it seems like they all came back,”

Braun said the delivery-only dinner is a new take on the meal’s slogan “No One Need Dine Alone”.

“I think if people look at it as they’re not necessarily dining alone, they might be having their meal alone but they’re dining with the 400 volunteers to help put this meal together, the 200 delivery drivers and the other 3,300 people eating,” he said.

“We know we’re all eating the same meal together you’re dining with the community of Topeka.”

The Pioneer Motive Apartments was one of many delivery stops.

Amy Jordan, a volunteer who has been working the meal for the last five years, said meal delivery is a rewarding experience.

“It’s fun to meet people and see them on Thanksgiving and bring a smile to their face,” she said.

“I feel like everybody should have a good meal on Thanksgiving and so I’m really thankful the community will come together and offer this and I’m just thankful to be part of it.”

Julie McCullough, a meal recipient said she feels the love.

“It’s a wonderful thing to have something to be thankful for and we all have things even though there are times when we feel we don’t have much to be thankful for,” she said.

Remaining meals and leftovers were donated to the Topeka Rescue Mission.

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