The kitchen at Martha’s Table on Princess Street was bustling with action on Monday morning, hours before a special Thanksgiving dinner was due to be served.
“The volunteers are coming in and doing the hands-on work and putting some time and love into the meal,” said Cindy Carr, the volunteer coordinator cook at the local non-profit, which provides low-cost nutritious meals to those in need.
Carr said work began more than a week ago to prepare the 18 turkeys, 12 hams, many side dishes and dozens of pies.
About 75 percent of the cost and items for the Thanksgiving meals are donated by local merchants for the annual event.
Many volunteers believe it isn’t just about the dinner, but more importantly the community spirit that is built at Martha’s.
“Just the family feel that you get from the volunteers and the clients we serve, it’s like a little family,” said volunteer Reanna King.
Last year Martha’s Table served up more than 46,000 meals.
Anyone is welcome to stop by, not just on holidays, but regularly for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
“No questions asked. We encourage families, people that may be working, people that are in-between jobs, people that are on pension or fixed incomes,” said Martha’s executive director Ronda Candy.
“No matter what your circumstances are, please come to Martha’s when you need to.”
Candy said the tasty Thanksgiving tradition has been going strong since the charitable organization began two decades ago.
It’s one of the busiest times of the year for Martha’s, which expects about 250 to 300 guests for the holiday feast.