by Mitchell Kirk Pharos-Tribune
---- — In the next few days, volunteers will start preparing a massive meal that will include close to 30 turkeys for River of Life Christian Church’s 45th annual community Thanksgiving dinner, an event that brings out 600 to 800 people.
Such a feat is only possible through the donations and efforts of local grocery stores, businesses and members of River of Life’s congregation and other congregations, said Pastor Keith Kincaid. The partnership allows everyone involved to appreciate the community that made it possible, which he said is the motivation behind the tradition that’s lasted nearly half a century.
“It’s important for us as a church because it’s one of the ways we can give back to the community and it’s really a Thanksgiving to God and to Jesus Christ for all the blessings we receive,” Kincaid said.
The meal begins at 11:30 a.m. Thursday following a brief special Thanksgiving service at 11:15 a.m. at the church, located at 130 Mall Road. Donations are accepted but not required. Carry-out and deliveries are available by calling 574-753-3332. Those who are unable to make it out can even call for a ride, Kincaid said.
It’s one of several events being held in the area for Thanksgiving. While the locations differ, they all share food, fellowship and a motive of showing thanks to the community by providing an experience partakers themselves can be thankful for.
One thing people may be thankful for this year as the country continues to recover from the recent recession is the dropping price of Thanksgiving meals.
According to an informal survey conducted by the Indiana Farm Bureau, the average cost of a Thanksgiving meal for 10 is $48.12, down nearly $3 from last year’s average of $51.05.
While the prices of several Thanksgiving staples have actually gone up, the bureau credits much of the overall decrease to a significant rise in turkey production across the state.
The Emmaus Mission Center will be serving turkey and more during its Thanksgiving meal at noon Thursday. The nonprofit organization, located at 805 Spencer St. in Logansport, provides for its residents on the holiday every year and anyone else who is homeless and looking for a meal.
“Some of the people we serve — we’re the only friends and family they have,” Mitchell said.
Royal Center United Methodist Church, located at 210 Chicago St. in Royal Center, will be serving a Thanksgiving meal from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursday for its second year. Carry-outs and deliveries are available by calling 574-643-9300.
Pastor Brandon Scott said the holiday provides a perfect opportunity to remind the congregation and instill in youth the importance of serving the community.
“It’s just very important for me to not only encourage the kids in our youth group but also my own children and everyone within the church that there are still plenty of needs right here in our own community,” Scott said.
First United Methodist Church, located at 800 E. Broadway in Logansport, will start celebrating Thanksgiving today through a community service of its own. After holiday services at 8 and 10:45 a.m., children will help make gifts that will eventually go out to residents of the community who are homebound.
“The holidays can be one of the most lonely times for persons who are homebound or in nursing homes,” said Pastor Dean Fager. “What we’re trying to do is help them feel remembered.”
Everyone who attends Hickory Grove Church in Delphi Wednesday night is invited to stand up and share what they’re thankful for while engaging in fellowship and enjoying pie and other treats.
Pastor Ken Smith said the church has been holding the event for about the last 10 years.
“It’s a good time to brag on God,” he said.
The fellowship begins at 7 p.m. at the church, located at 9714 N. Carroll County Road 700 West, Delphi.
The Net Foursquare Church, located at 3025 Maple Drive in Logansport, will celebrate Thanksgiving after its service today, which starts at 10:30 a.m., asking that guests bring two side dishes to share.
After the meal, Pastor David Richey said he and other congregation members will head to Kokomo to assist with cleanup efforts at The Net Foursquare’s sister church, Kokomo Foursquare Church, which was hit hard by last weekend’s storms.
Mitchell Kirk is a staff reporter at the Pharos-Tribune. He can be reached at 574-732-5130 or email@example.com. Follow him: @PharosMAK
Thanksgiving happenings WHAT: Dinner WHEN: Noon today WHERE: Net Foursquare Church, 3025 Maple Drive, Logansport INFO: Bring two sides to share WHAT: Fellowship and desserts WHEN: 7 p.m. Wednesday WHERE: Hickory Grove Church, 9714 N. Carroll County Road 700 West, Delphi WHAT: Dinner WHEN: 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursday WHERE: Royal Center United Methodist Church, 210 Chicago St., Royal Center INFO: Carry-out and deliveries available by calling 574-643-9300 WHAT: Dinner WHEN: 11:30 a.m. Thursday WHERE: River of Life Christian Church, 130 Mall Road, Logansport INFO: Carry-out, deliveries and transportation to dinner available by calling 574-753-3332 WHAT: Dinner WHEN: Noon Thursday WHERE: Emmaus Mission Center, 805 Spencer St., Logansport