The Annual Community Thanksgiving Dinner will offer turkey, ham, mashed potatoes, gravy, vegetables, rolls and desserts to at least 3,000 people on Nov. 21 [MONDAY]. The dinner, which is free and open to everyone in the community, will be held from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Pontotoc County Agri-Plex, 1710 N. Broadway Ave.
Student organizers in the Human Resources Club at East Central University say they are expecting more people this year.
The Chickasaw Nation will provide free transportation for anyone in the Ada city limits and, for the first time, ECU will provide a free shuttle service for ECU students living in residence halls and married student housing.
Ada residents should call Chickasaw Nation Transportation Services at 1-800-492-2115 or 580-310-6453 by noon on Wednesday [NOV. 16] to be picked up.
ECU students should sign up for rides at the information desk in the Bill Cole University Center. Two shuttles will run every 30 minutes from 5:30 to 7 p.m. The pick-up point will be at Main and Center streets by the Hallie Brown Ford Fine Arts Center.
Volunteers will not deliver meals to homes, but Hospice agencies will have an opportunity to deliver meals to their patients, said ECU student Molly Selzer. She and Tammy Brown are co-chairs of the Annual Thanksgiving Dinner Committee.
Volunteers and cash donations are still needed. It takes about $5,000 to purchase 35 hams and turkeys, other food and supplies, Selzer said, and almost everything is purchased locally. Volunteers can help set up during the day, serve the food and clean up during and after the dinner. To volunteer, offer a donation or for more information, call 580-559-5435.
“It’s a lot of stress trying to get everything done,” Selzer said. “We don’t want to let anyone down. It’s a tradition in Ada. It’s been around so long that the community looks forward to it.”
Fifteen members of the Human Resources Club are helping organize the dinner with the help of many others in ECU sororities, fraternities and organizations and local restaurants, businesses, churches and youth and civic organizations.