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Lathrop Rotary hosts community dinner
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LATHROP – The Lathrop Morning Rotary will be hosting its first community Thanksgiving dinner on Thursday, Nov. 25, at the Senior Center.

The City Council at their regular meeting Monday night unanimously approved a fee waiver for the club’s use of the facility on that day. The waiver means the service club will be able to use the $500 fee that they would have paid to rent the facility to buy turkeys and other things that they will need to host the event.

The plan is to serve two meals, one at 11 a.m. and the other at 1 p.m. They expect to serve 100 people at each meal session.

Their target guests are seniors who don’t like to go out, or may not have the means to go out and have dinner elsewhere that day, or anybody who don’t have anybody to share dinner with, said Rotarian Steve Dresser who made the announcement and  issued the official invitation to the public at the council meeting earlier this week.

He said they will be contacting the schools and area churches for the names of individuals and/or families who may want to share the Thanksgiving meal.

The turkey dinner with all the trimmings are being served during the day and not in the evening because “there are seniors who don’t like to go out late in the evening,” Dresser said.

“In the past, we have provided (Thanksgiving) baskets to families in the community,” he added, but actually serving the Thanksgiving meal “will enable us to meet the needs of more (people).”

In the previous years when they distributed the Thanksgiving food baskets which included a frozen turkey, Dresser said, “we found out that some people don’t have the means to cook the meals” for a variety of reasons.

When they delivered the food basket to the families, some of them said, “well, you know, I can’t use this; I don’t have a place or the means to cook it,” Dresser recalled.

Some said their stove didn’t work; others said their gas had been shut off.

He also recalled one Christmastime when they went to a home to deliver a food basket for the holidays. They knocked and when someone opened the door, they were welcomed to an empty house with “no furniture, nothing.”

This Thanksgiving dinner is an outgrowth of the Thanksgiving food basket giveaway, Dresser said.

The money that they saved from not having to pay the rent for the use of the Senior Center will give them a head start on the funds that they will need, he said. However, anybody in the community who wishes to make a donation to this effort will be appreciated, Dresser said.

For more information about the Thanksgiving dinner, how to make a donation to this event, or if they know someone whom the club could send an invitation to, call Dresser at 982-1798.