Hometown Weekly Reporter
On Tuesday, November 13, the Dover Church hosted its annual Thanksgiving luncheon for the members of the community.
The Council on Aging has run the luncheon for at least 11 years, and this year’s iteration of the event was particularly well attended.
“It was a rainy day and I wasn’t sure how our turnout would be, and our turnout was excellent,” said Council on Aging Director Janet Claypoole. “It shows how important this event is to the seniors because they braved the rain and came out to join us.”
Claypoole explained why they hold this annual Thanksgiving feast.
“For some people, they don’t travel and don’t have family nearby and family they’re connected with, so it’s a great way [for community members] to stay connected [with others] and [for us] to provide a hot meal to people,” she said. “It’s always nice for people to come out and connect with their friends.”
The Dover Church had around 70 people sign up ahead of time and 80 people in attendance; all had a great time.
“It was nice to have the seniors come, and we had a lot of volunteers that helped, so it was a really enjoyable event,” said Claypoole. “We had six turkeys, and there was nothing left.”
In addition to a great turnout among the community, the police chief and different members of the clergy were also on hand to help carve the turkeys.
The lunch included turkey, as well as the other classic great Thanksgiving foods, such as mashed potatoes, stuffing, cranberry sauce, squash, and pumpkin pie.
Claypoole explained that the event used to be a smaller lunch, but it has grown throughout the years.
“It has grown so much that we don’t have it at the Caryl Community Center anymore,” she said. “We have so many people [that] come, and needed the bigger space.”
In addition to an increase in attendance, the lunch has also had an increase in volunteers, which is always crucial to the success of the annual event.
“You can’t do this without your volunteers,” Claypoole said. “With a large event like this, it makes a big difference … There were many willing hands and … that’s what makes the event successful.”
“Everybody in this community is really good at helping each other, and … that showed at the Thanksgiving meal,” Claypoole added. “We are really thankful for our volunteers and our community.”