Community Thanksgiving coming soon (delivery or pickup only)
November 20, 2020
In spite of the surge in Covid-19 cases, the annual community Thanksgiving dinner will go on ... in a Covid-conscious way.
All meals will be delivered or picked up from this year's home base at the Cloquet VFW at 210 Arch Street, said Raffy Johnson. Curbside pickup in the VFW parking lot will be available from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 26. Delivery will run from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day.
Anyone who would like to order a meal is asked to call 218-590-4027 by Nov. 24. Leave a message with name, phone number, address and how many meals for delivery. Call ahead for pickup too, Johnson said, but just leave name, phone number and number of meals. They need to know who's planning to eat either way, so they can set the meal count.
"I'm trying to get people to go with delivery because it's easier," he said.
The annual event is sponsored by Chapter 18 of the Disabled American Veterans and the Auxiliary, where Johnson is also treasurer and serves as point person.
In a normal year, they usually serve between 600 and 800 meals, between the community meal and deliveries. He said the year they had a snowstorm the day before was even busier than normal because people couldn't travel.
"I don't know what's going to happen this year," Johnson said. "With people being told not to get together in big groups, we could be even busier. Who knows?"
In previous years, the sitdown meal was held at Zion Lutheran Church in Cloquet with deliveries run out of the VFW. Volunteers will be utilizing the church kitchen this year, but the operations center was moved to the VFW.
While the DAV has the volunteers to help with cooking or packaging the Thanksgiving Day meals, they will almost certainly need drivers willing to load up their own vehicles with food, Johnson said. (Call 218-590-4027 to volunteer.) They will have pickup orders in back, and delivery drivers out front of the VFW. Drivers need to be healthy and free from Covid. "We did a better job this year of getting posters up around the county, so I'm expecting orders from all over," Johnson said.
"It's very rewarding for the disabled vets," Johnson said. "And it's a way to thank everyone that has helped with our other events throughout the year."