CARTHAGE Thanksgiving for many is a time for family gatherings, but those who are alone and families that cant or dont want to cook a big meal also have a place to go. For the fifth year, the Elks and Lions clubs are combining their efforts to hold the annual community Thanksgiving feast.
The event began with a family conversation among Adam J. Fuller, the Elks exalted ruler; his sister Diana Clement, a former Lions Club president, and their mother, Jeanne Fuller, who also is a Lion.
Now it has become a family tradition for the Fullers as well as for many other families associated with the two service organizations.
The Elks are a benevolent organization, so it seemed a natural fit for them to be involved, Mr. Fuller said.
He said over the years there has been a wide range of people seated at the dinner table, including senior citizens, military members, single people and couples who dont want to make a whole meal just for two.
Part of it is the community aspect as opposed to eating alone, the Elks leader said. There are a lot of volunteers, many who have been here every year. It is becoming a good thing to get together and have a good time.
Lions President Dawn L. Lelakowski said the dinner is a way for the members to give back to the community and to have a presence.
The organizers have sent letters seeking sponsors for the dinner, so it is free to all who attend.
Donations of desserts are sought. They can be dropped off at the Elks Lodge, 511 Fulton St., anytime next week up to Thanksgiving day.
There are no qualifications to attend, Mr. Fuller said. It is open to anybody and everybody.
Although walk-ins will be welcomed, those planning to attend are asked to call 493-4043 before Monday. Unlike in previous years, there will be only one seating, from noon to 2 p.m. Thanksgiving day at the Elks lodge.
Deliveries can be arranged in Carthage from noon to 1 p.m. by calling 493-1762 on the day of the dinner.