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Cooks, Donations Being Sought For Annual Thanksgiving Dinner
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Escalon’s annual Community Thanksgiving Dinner is once again scheduled for Thanksgiving Day at the Escalon Community Center, Thursday, Nov. 24. This all-volunteer effort is in need of cooks, donations and volunteers this year.

The free dinner, open to all in the community, features the full, traditional Thanksgiving spread and serving is from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Home delivery is offered to those unable to get to the Community Center as well.

All donations are appreciated and can be made to the Escalon Ministerial Association – Thanksgiving, P.O. Box 1, Escalon CA 95320.

For information on volunteering, either to help prepare and serve the meal, or to make donations of food items, contact Dianna Dunn at 209-872-5322.

“We’re still looking for a cook, and any donations of turkeys,” said Dunn.

She also said organizers are really hoping that people will come in to the Community Center this coming holiday and join in the community meal. Past years have seen an increase in the home delivered meals and people coming in for ‘take out’ but she hopes to see more people enjoying the fellowship and camaraderie of the holiday dinner at the Community Center as well, especially families.

“We are also in need of volunteers to set up the day before, cooking volunteers, people in the kitchen the day of,” Dunn said.

She has placed information at the high school, seeking any campus clubs that want to help out. Football players have, for many years, volunteered to take the home delivered meals to the area’s elderly and shut-ins.

“I am looking forward to it,” Dunn said of working with the volunteer crews to put on the holiday dinner.

Donations of all canned goods such as green beans, yams and the like are also being accepted.

The full meal includes a salad course to start, followed by made-to-order dinner plates featuring turkey and all the traditional trimmings, followed by pie for dessert.

“We want people to come in and take a seat and have a delicious turkey dinner,” Dunn said. “It’s free to everyone.”

Serving at the Community Center will be from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.; the home delivered meals are packed up and ready to go just before they open up for the sit down portion of the day.

“We are really trying to promote a happy, warm family atmosphere,” Dunn added. “We want to get more people to sit down and enjoy a good dinner.”

For those that do need delivery of meals, contact DeeAnna Jackson at 209-838-6808. Leave your name, address, phone number and how many meals are needed.

The Escalon Community Center is at the corner of Escalon-Bellota and Arthur roads. Those wishing to dine in can come at any time during the 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. time frame. Escalon Ministerial Association is the sponsoring organization for the community meal, and many local businesses and residents also help contribute.

Meanwhile, the Escalon FFA chapter and the EHS PIT, Peer Interaction Team, have joined forces to host a Thanksgiving Food Drive at the school. The groups are collecting items to make up Thanksgiving food baskets for families in the community in need. Though the drive is being hosted through the school, donations from the community are accepted also, with a variety of items being sought. Those include boxed instant potatoes, canned ham, boxed stuffing, canned vegetables, boxed cake mix, frosting, olives, boxed biscuit mix, aluminum turkey trays, canned cranberry sauce, packets, jars and cans of gravy, no bake cheesecake mix, and frozen turkeys. All the non-perishable items can be brought in at any time; the frozen turkeys are being requested on Wednesday, Nov. 16, taken to Room 36 in the Ag Department on campus.