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Christ the Rock Church to offer in person Thanksgiving meal

Published: Nov. 24, 2021 at 7:43 PM CST|Updated: Nov. 24, 2021 at 10:19 PM CST
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APPLETON, Wis. (WBAY) - After offering only deliveries last year because of the pandemic, a free Thanksgiving meal in Appleton will return Thursday for those wanting to eat together in person.

On Wednesday night, students at Christ the Rock Church did much of the set-up at the Grand Meridian.

“I am really excited and thrilled that I got the opportunity to do something so cool, that is so giving. I’ve always loved giving to the community and this is like the perfect thing,” said 16 year old volunteer Emily Wiitanen.

Christ the Rock expects to deliver more than 22 hundred meals first thing in the morning, and then open up the dining room for walk-ins between the hours of noon and two o’clock.

Pastor Micah Neely said, “Preps start actually Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, we already have a lot prepped but tonight we’re just working on slicing the thousands and thousands slices of turkey we have and then setting the room and getting some deliveries, starting to package them.”

Organizers say they would normally serve about a thousand people in person but this year because of the ongoing pandemic it’s hard to say how many people might feel comfortable enough to show up.

On Thanksgiving, there’s also a number of people who might need companionship more than a meal, and this is a great opportunity.

Wiitanen added, “It’s more welcoming when you eat in person because it feels like you’re one big family and not sitting by yourself and you’re sitting at a table with a bunch of strangers being able to hear their story, being able to interact and make friendships. It’s really cool.”

There’s no charge for the meal, but organizers are encouraging people to show up early, to avoid the possibility of running out of food, should turn-out exceed expectations.

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