Since 1990, the Community Thanksgiving Dinner has been a holiday tradition in Jamestown. Hundreds of people gathered on Thursday, Nov. 28, to celebrate Thanksgiving at the the 29th annual dinner at Concordia Lutheran Church with a free meal thanks to the help of volunteers.
Among those volunteers were three Jamestown police officers, including Lt. Sid Mann. The officers assisted individuals who attended the dinner by carrying their plates to the table to ensure everyone was able to enjoy a Thanksgiving meal.
"Anytime we can help out with people in the community, we take the opportunity," Mann said. "Everyone can benefit from enjoying a nice home-cooked meal."
Mann said the Jamestown Police Department has been assisting at the Community Thanksgiving Dinner for about five years.
"It kind of humanizes the department to come out here and volunteer," Mann said. "It's not every day you get served food by a police officer in uniform."
The church opened its doors for food service at 11 a.m. on Thursday and was immediately met with a line of people. Amy Neustel, one of the volunteer coordinators of the Community Thanksgiving Dinner, said 25 turkeys were prepared and plates included stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, corn, buns and pumpkin pie along with milk, coffee and water.
Neustel said the church expected to serve approximately 700 meals total between the individuals who dined in the church, those who picked up dishes for take-out and those who requested food to be delivered through their residence. Neustel said the dinner would not be possible without the volunteers.