While most people are traveling today to be with their families for tomorrow’s meal(s), parade, and giving thanks, I’ll be with my parents and friends helping out both days at the Hometown Thanksgiving in my community up north in Glens Falls.
Today, we’ll be preparing and decorating the church in which the event takes place with all Autumn and thanksgiving brown, orange, and yellow colours, while other volunteers help prepare the food. We even have decorations made by local elementary school students. The approximately thirty of us all work together to move the tables into position, hang up streamers and banners and wall decals not unlike the picture above (albeit with happier turkeys), and place pumpkins and gourds in the hallways.
Tomorrow, right from 9 in the morning, we’ll be putting out food for serving, and packing little containers to deliver dinners to those who can’t make it to the church. People start coming in at about 12:00 PM and we guide them to the room designated as “dining hall” and help seat them, provide them with a menu, and talk to them while they eat if they’d like, because many of them don’t have anybody to spend time with. All the while, we have radio and live musicians playing the starts of the Christmas season. Many of the volunteers, including myself, sign up to deliver the food all over Glens Falls and the surrounding community. At the end of the day, we’ll have served hundreds of people.
As for why we don’t just make a Thanksgiving dinner and watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, then sit down to eat like most people, well, for a while now, we haven’t had much family close by and we knew some friends involved in the Hometown Thanksgiving, and so we just decided, “why not help out?” My dad is taping the parade, and we’re just going to have a small dinner and watch it after we’re done volunteering.
It’s such a good feeling to know that we can help feed and spend time with those who cannot feed themselves or don’t have any family to spend Thanksgiving with. If any of you have programs in/near your town, I’d highly suggest participating, but I absolutely understand if you want to just stay with your family that day. Whatever you do tomorrow, have a wonderful Thanksgiving Day!