MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Wesley United Methodist Church and Chili’s restaurant held the 13th annual free community Thanksgiving dinner in Morgantown.

Volunteers baked 40 turkeys and used a production line to fill the to-go dinners with traditional Thanksgiving foods. Turkey, ham, mashed and sweet potatoes, beans, corn and pie were some of the tasty foods offered this year.

Volunteers loaded to-go boxes with Thanksgiving dinners via assembly line. (WBOY image)

Several community agencies placed orders for pick up, including the Friendship House recovery program.

“I just can’t say how grateful I am for this community spirit we have here and this huge effort for this church because this is it for Thanksgiving, for folks on the streets or for folks who are having hard times,” said Alice Meehan, a volunteer for the Friendship House,

Karen Kelley King, the Thanksgiving dinner coordinator, said, “We had two goals when we started this in 2008. One, that it was to be a community effort and not just be Wesley Church, and the second was that we be financially independent. So, again, we raise our own money so that we didn’t want to be a burden for this church.”

King said last year’s dinner was canceled due to COVID. This year’s event was reduced to take out and delivery for safety reasons. But she hopes that next year, things will be back to normal, and they can have a nice sit-down dinner together as a community.