Service with a Smile

Volunteer Allison Evans accepts donations from patrons to be applied to next year's feast.

The 23rd annual community-wide Thanksgiving feast dished up more than 1,750 plates with the help of 130 volunteers, all served drive-through.

“It worked out just right,” event coordinator Hector Gutierrez said Friday. “We were able to serve good, full plates and nothing went to waste.”

The event is impossible to pull off without the help of volunteers, according to Gutierrez. His hope was to have at least 30 volunteers and was impressed to have far more.

“The turnout was great and the volunteers were great,” Gutierrez said.

About 20 Cub Scouts and Girl Scouts made up a portion of the volunteer staff.

“They absolutely loved it. They couldn’t get the plates off the line fast enough,” El Campo Pack 196 Cub Scoutmaster Jennifer Hubenak said Friday. “They were so excited, even the little ones.”

Other service organizations that came out to help include the Catholic Daughters, Knights of Columbus, Lions Club, volunteers from El Campo Police Department, Wharton County Sheriff’s Office and several school clubs and organizations.

Weather and to-go only dining didn’t keep volunteers from turning out, Hubenak added.

“I was super impressed by the staff that showed up. It was a great showing of community support … and with Hector Gutierrez (event coordinator), it was so organized,” she said.

In addition to the meals served to go from the El Campo Civic Center, more than 300 plates were delivered by volunteers all over town to homebound citizens and public servants working through the holiday.

Already planning for next year, Gutierrez said they plan to go back to the traditional sit down meal in 2022, but that he’s happy with the end result of this year’s efforts.

“We pulled it off. Everything was delivered, nothing went to waste and it was great,” Gutierrez said.

Donations to be applied to next year’s Thanksgiving feast may be addressed to El Campo Community Event, P.O. Box 443, El Campo, TX 77437.

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