The 34th annual Thanksgiving Love Feast is seeking volunteers, warm coats and desserts as they prepare for the meal Thursday at the Rome Civic Center.
The free Thanksgiving dinner will be available for take-out for whomever shows up, regardless of circumstance, said organizer Rev. Terrell Shields of Greater Mount Calvary Missionary Baptist Church.
“We’ve purchased 75 turkeys, and we continue to need more of everything — desserts, warm clothes and, especially, financial donations,” Shields said.
Service starts at 11 a.m. and continues until 2 p.m. or whenever the food runs out. All meals are take-out only, due to lack of space and covid.
The Love Feast delivers more than food; they also also offer free warm coats and jackets to whomever needs them, and are also asking for donations of the same. Donations of coats and jackets will be accepted Wednesday, Nov. 23, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Civic Center.
The feast is sponsored by Concerned Citizens of Rome and Floyd County and organized by Shields. He credits his then 4-year-old daughter Terrica with inspiring the annual Thanksgiving Love Feast over 30 years ago.
“She was in daycare and the teacher was trying to get them to eat all of their food and she told the kids there were people who didn’t have anything to eat on Thanksgiving,” Shields told the RN-T in 2019. “When she got home that day, she asked us if that was true, that some people didn’t have anything to eat on Thanksgiving. When I told her it was true, she said, ‘Can’t you do something about that?’”
The feast typically serves around 3,000 meals, with 200 to 300 volunteers working in shifts. Organizers have purchased 75 turkeys, and volunteers will cook them at home and deliver to the Civic Center on Thanksgiving morning.
Those who would like to pitch in on Thanksgiving Day can call 706-234-2091 to find out when’s the best time to help. Volunteers are needed throughout the day, with typically two-hour shifts; 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., and 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Donations are gratefully accepted via checks payable to “Thanksgiving Love Feast,” P.O. Box 161, Rome GA 30161.
And, this year, donations are also payable via the Cash app — #Lovefeast1987.