Groups plan Thanksgiving events

Published 10:27 pm Monday, November 17, 2014

A number of churches and organizations are having events this weekend and next week to ensure local families have enough food on their tables for Thanksgiving.

A couple of local traditions that have existed for more than a decade will take place this Saturday.

LW’s Lawn Service and MWM Investments and Property Management will have its 11th annual Day of Giving from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at 615 Old E. Pinner St. LeOtis Williams, the owner of the businesses, gives of his own money to purchase turkeys with all the trimmings to give out to people who have vouchers that have been previously distributed.

Email newsletter signup

The event has helped more than 14,000 families over the years. This year, refreshments will be served, the Bon Secours Care-A-Van will be on site, and other health care providers will perform health screenings.

The other traditional food giveaway is held by Impact Suffolk, a coalition of churches that has held the event for 16 years.

Behind the Farm Fresh on North Main Street from 9 to 11 a.m., the event will give out turkeys and non-perishable items from churches and business supporters that have collected the food over the last couple of months.

“We see it as a gift to the city for those who are, whatever the reason in these economic times, finding themselves with economic hardships,” said Barbara Edwards of Impact Suffolk.

The group anticipates about 800 to 1,000 people coming to receive food, Edwards said.

“It’s also an opportunity for the churches to come together and work in their community,” she said. “Outreach projects are a positive physical help to the community, as well as a spiritual one.”

Another tradition that hasn’t been around quite so long is the Thanksgiving dinner that will be held this year at the Salvation Army, 400 Bank St., this Saturday.

Sponsored the Salvation Army, Willing2Share and area churches, the dinner was held last year at First Baptist Church.

“We moved it to the Salvation Army,” said Kathleen Mitchell of Willing2Share. “It’s a bigger facility, so we can accommodate more people, and it’s central to the area we would like to serve.”

There will be enough food available for 250 people, Mitchell said. The doors open at 12:30 p.m., the meal will begin at 1 p.m., and entertainment will start at 1:30 p.m.

Visitors will have the chance to play games to earn “money” they can spend in a store that will have shoes and clothes, Bibles, books, DVDs, CDs, gifts and other things, Mitchell said.

“It’s a blast,” she said. “It’s really an event to bless the community and provide them with some things that they need,” she said.

This is the event’s seventh year but only the second in downtown Suffolk. First Baptist and East End Baptist churches are partnering on the event this year, Mitchell said.

An event set for Thanksgiving Day will also serve the community, organizer Barbara Alexander said.

“We’re trying to provide Thanksgiving meals for those who are less fortunate or those who may be alone, the elderly, or people with children,” said Alexander, who is with Higher Calling Ministries.

She has been wanting to coordinate the event for some time, but this is the first year it’s been able to get off the ground, she said.

“It is really coming together well,” she said, adding that the menu will include turkey, ham, beans, mashed potatoes, candied yams, stuffing, gravy, cranberry sauce, rolls and dessert.

The group is preparing for 200, and people who plan to attend the event — held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Kings Fork Community House, 1600 Kings Fork Road — are asked to RSVP by Nov. 20 by calling 676-7720, 371-6196 or 620-9034.

Suffolk Christian Church and Providence United Methodist Church are supporting the event by offering transportation and help with food, Alexander said.

Transportation will be provided continually throughout the event from the Salvation Army, 400 Bank St.; Chorey Park Apartments, 804 W. Constance Road; and the bus shelter at Market Park, 326 N. Main St.

In addition to the above events, the following events are scheduled:

  • Disabled American Veterans Chapter 5 is sponsoring a Thanksgiving dinner from noon to 1 p.m. next Wednesday.
  • Rising St. James Pentecostal Holiness Church, 201 N. Sixth St., will have a Thanksgiving dinner at 7 p.m. next Wednesday. Call 539-7026 for more information.
  • Bethlehem Christian Church, 312 Bute St., will serve Thanksgiving meals at 1 p.m. Call 539-1167 or visit for more information.