More than 240 people joined the Community Christmas dinner held Christmas Day at the Kinsmen Community Centre with lots of food left over.
Organizer Bob Hepp said he had cooked up 13 turkeys averaging 35 pounds each for those who showed up. There was enough food leftover for about 300 to-go meals to be packed up for everyone.
Hepp said about 40 volunteers helped cook, clean, entertain or just eat with someone. “I had some excellent help in the kitchen. It went really great.”
Hepp said they also had visitors from the Centennial Centre for Mental Health and Brain Injury come as well. They were a welcome addition to the day.
Between the volunteers and attendees, people of all walks of life mingled with each other. Those with a sweet tooth were able to take advantage of a fun candy table and Hepp believes for some of those present, it was their only chance to have a Christmas dinner.
Some people have found solace in the Community Christmas and can be recognized each year they come. For others, it is a time to be part of the community and to be together with others.
There was also musical company from the Crestomere Cowboys and Diane and Richard Goodwin who warmed the spirits of those who enjoyed the communal Christmas celebration.
Hepp says the event was so popular that the Community Christmas bank account has been depleted and planning for next year has already started. Hepp intends to fundraise a little earlier in 2015 to ensure they have enough money to host the event.
“It was a great turnout,” he concluded.