LIMA — In the city, Jerry Lewis’ McDonald’s will again feed 3,200 like family on Thursday for Thanksgiving.
But, if you’re in the mood to see how the pioneers did it, Litzenberg Memorial Woods in Hancock County will host a holiday open house from 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. today.
The early pioneers, portrayed by living history volunteers and Hancock Parks District staff, will show how they prepared their turkey for Thanksgiving and what sweet treats they prepared around the holiday. Mrs. Poe, portrayed by living history volunteer Sandy Berger, will prepare the holiday turkey and help youngsters pull taffy. Guests are encouraged to take a seat in the parlor and warm themselves by the fireplace and listen as a few McKinnis neighbors from the settlement talk about how they plan to celebrate the holiday.
Litzenberg Memorial Woods located at 6100 U.S. Route 224, six miles west of Findlay. For details, visit http://j.mp/SUP6pt or call 419-425-7275.
Thursday will mark the eighth year for the Jerry Lewis’ McDonald’s Thanksgiving Day Dinner, which was started in 1989 by the Chester Carey family. It will be held from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Lima Veterans Memorial Civic Center.
“Each year the dinner continues to grow, a great deal of which is due to the economy. We know that now, more than ever, it is important to have a place for people to eat and fellowship on a special day like Thanksgiving,” said local McDonald’s franchise owner Jerry Lewis.
The dinner will include the traditional Thanksgiving fixings, including turkey, gravy, mashed potatoes, stuffing, pumpkin pie and more. Enough food will be prepared to feed 3,200 guests. More than 800 pounds of turkey, 800 pounds of mashed potatoes, 540 pounds of stuffing, 300 pounds of gravy, more than 200 pies and 24 pounds of whipped cream will be prepared that day. The dinner is free and open to the public.
“Some guests join us because they are not financially or physically able to prepare a meal. Others join us because they do not have any friends or relatives in town this year. Either way, we become a family that day fellowshipping together,” Lewis said.
In addition to the dinner, there will be clothing and grocery giveaways. Only Believe Ministries in Botkins will bring a school bus filled with clothing. Guests will be able to take with them any needed clothing items including pants, shirts, shoes, coats and hats. There will again be a grocery bag giveaway for guests. Last year, each guest was able to take home several bags of groceries.
The grocery giveaway is made possible through the generous donations of many local organizations including the Boy Scouts of Allen County, Maverick Media radio stations and Save-A-Lot Food Stores. The Boy Scouts are collecting nonperishable food and toiletry items during business hours at the Scout Shop, 752 W. Robb Ave.
Maverick Media and Save-A-Lot Food Stores have teamed up again this year for a Cram the Van event to collect items for the Thanksgiving Day dinner. Various Maverick Media radio stations will be at the three Save-A-Lot Food Stores in Lima, on North Cole Street and Robb Avenue, Bellefontaine Avenue, and West Vine and South Elizabeth streets, on Monday and Tuesday. For every $3 donation that a customer adds to his or her bill, a bag of groceries will be donated to the Thanksgiving Day dinner.
Free transportation to and from the event will be provided if needed. RTA will have one bus running from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day to transport people to and from the dinner and the following locations: Pilgrim Place Apartments, The Towers Apartments, Fourth Street Apartments, Furl Williams Apartments, Lima West Apartments, and up and down Brower Road.
Around the region, here are some other Thanksgiving Day meal options:
•Continued Care Inc. and Tender Home Care will provide a Thanksgiving meal to clients who do not have family in the area or are not going to be with family for the holiday. They will provide meals to about 180 clients in the area Wednesday.
•Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1275 will serve a Thanksgiving dinner beginning at noon Thursday at the post, 124 E. Elm St., Lima. Cost is $7.50 per dinner, available until sold out.
•The Future Church and Livingword Fellowship will offer a free Thanksgiving dinner for the community from 5 to 6:30 p.m. Thursday at 125 W. Kibby St. The church will also give away coats to anyone in need of a winter coat.
•A free Thanksgiving dinner will be served 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday at Trinity United Methodist Church, 137 N. Pratt St., Ottawa. Served by Tri-R Guns and the Ron Deatrick Family and Friends, the dinner is free. Donations of canned foods for the Ottawa Food Pantry will be accepted.
•A community Thanksgiving dinner will be served from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursday at St. Joseph Parish Life Center on Pearl Street in Wapakoneta. This is a free event.