Salvation Army gears for big holiday meal

For some Crossroads residents, a hot, home-cooked Thanksgiving meal is simply out of reach, both financially and physically. However, the Big Spring Area Salvation Army will be reaching out to those folks this week, as the local charity presents its annual holiday meal.While the effort reaches out to low-income families, the hungry and others, it all begins with hard work from numerous volunteers.“We'll be working on getting all of the vegetables ready and start cooking turkeys — about 20 of them — sometime Tuesday.” said Salvation Army Social Worker Bessie Flores. “The bulk of the work gets done the day before, however.”Several civic groups are expected to volunteer their time to make the Thanksgiving feast a success, but more help is always welcome around the local charity's kitchen.“It really is just an immense amount of work, and it has to be done in a fairly short period of time,” Flores said. “Our volunteers are absolutely vital to that process. We have groups that come in just about every year and help, and this year we're hoping to see some new faces as well. Giving your time and volunteering during Thanksgiving really gives you a new perspective on the holiday.Volunteers are expected to begin delivering meals to homebound residents at approximately 10 a.m. Thursday.“As we have in the past, we'll be delivering meals to those that can't make it here to the Salvation Army office for dinner,” Flores said. “We need to get a count of how many meals will need to be delivered. What we're asking is for people that need a meal delivered call to make arrangements by 5 p.m. the day before Thanksgiving.”Area residents wanting to volunteer their services to help prepare the meal should show up at the charity's office, located at 811 W. Fifth St., Wednesday morning.Time and hard work aren't the only things on the Salvation Army's holiday wish list, according to Flores.“We also need people to donate deserts,” Flores said. “The community always comes through for us each year in a big way, and we're hoping this year will be no different.”This year's holiday menu will be filled with traditional Thanksgiving fare.“Thanksgiving just isn't Thanksgiving without turkey,” Flores said. “We'll also have the trimmings, like dressing, mashed potatoes and gravy and green beans. A lot of work goes into preparing a Thanksgiving meal, but it's well worth it.”The in-house meal will be served in the Salvation Army's dining hall from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m.“It’s open to everyone in the community,” she said. “Anyone — and I do mean anyone — who would like to come in and have a great Thanksgiving meal. Bring your family and have a great meal.”For more information on how you can help, or to set up a meal delivery, contact the Big Spring Salvation Army at 267-8239.