McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

Local News

November 30, 2013

3,000 fed through Pittsburg County Community Thanksgiving Dinner

McALESTER — Approximately 3,000 individuals were fed through the Pittsburg County Community Thanksgiving Dinner in McAlester.

“It went real well,” said Jim Kelley, a former Pittsburg County assessor and one of the organizers of the event.

“The final count is real close to the 3,000 mark, possibly a little more,” Kelley said.

Those planning the dinner said they had prepared food for approximately 200 more people than they expected.

“We ran out of dressing right at the end,” Kelley said. “We thought we had plenty extra.”

Still, no one went away hungry, according to Kelley.

“I think everybody got away with plenty to eat,” he said. The free holiday meals were available to anyone who wanted to participate, with no age or income guidelines in place.

Meals were served in-person Thanksgiving Day at the George Nigh National Guard Armory in McAlester, with meals also available for pick-up and with home deliveries available for those in Pittsburg County who could not made it to the armory.

This year, from 20-to-30 less meals were delivered in the Hartshorne area when compared to last  year, while numbers were up in Quinton and Kiowa, he said.

For the deliveries, organizers of the event were helped by those who volunteer their services on Thanksgiving Day. Other volunteers assisted with food preparation, helping with everything from chopping celery to crumbling cornbread for use in the dressing.

“There were a tremendous number of new faces I hadn’t seen before,” Kelley said, referring to new volunteers who stepped up to assist with the Community Thanksgiving Dinner for the first time this year.

“I didn’t get to meet them all,” Kelley said, but he added their help is much-appreciated and the event could not have been successful without them.

After serving the final meals, volunteers were able to perform an initial clean-up at the armory and leave by 2:30 p.m. Thanksgiving Day. Several volunteers planned to return by Monday and complete the final clean-up, according to Kelley.

Meanwhile, plans for next year’s 29th Annual Community Thanksgiving Dinner are already under way.

That includes replacing a few of the electric cookers and other equipment. Kelly said it’s important to have properly- working equipment on hand in advance of next Thanksgiving, so workers won’t have to replace equipment when starting next year’s food preparations.

Contact James Beaty at


Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • Devin Mitchell McAlester man facing rape charges has hearing date set

    A preliminary hearing date has been set for a man who is facing charges of rape in the first degree (victim under age 14) and sodomy, victim under the age of 16.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • comish County to decide on liquor sales

    They’re ready to give the voters a shot.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • comish Election set to decide Sunday sales of liquor by the drink

    They’re ready to give the voters a shot.
    Pittsburg County commissioners have called a Nov. 4 Special Election date for voters to decide if they want to approve the sale of liquor by the drink on Sundays.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Randy Green Judge rules in Green case

    A Pittsburg County judge has ruled the city of McAlester acted improperly in amending former City Manager Randy Green’s retirement plan to eliminate an “additional benefit” of $1,764.49.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Road closed ROAD CLOSED

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • mhrc Okla. State student observing at MRHC

    An Oklahoma State University student is observing at McAlester Regional Health Center as part of the rural medicine track offered at the university.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • CHRIS-MORRIS-2.jpg Detective's Dispatch

    The McAlester Police Department responds to domestic violence calls on a daily basis. Many times when our officers arrive, we get very little cooperation.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • lungdoctor.png Hospital hires lung specialist

    McAlester has a new lung doctor, the first since 2008.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Emergency Services/Public Safety OEM sets large scale exercise

    The McAlester/Pittsburg County Office of Emergency Management will be conducting a large scale exercise Aug. 2 at The Village/Kinkead Hills that was designed to be as realistic as possible.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • MHS band prepares for upcoming year

    Friday saw the first units of the McAlester High School marching band gather, in preparation for the activities of the coming school year.

    July 28, 2014

Seasonal Content
AP Video
US Ready to Slap New Sanctions on Russia Kerry: Not Worried About Israeli Criticism Boater Rescued From Edge of Kentucky Dam Girl Struck by Plane on Florida Beach Dies Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre House to Vote on Slimmed-down Bill for Border Looming Demand Could Undercut Flight Safety Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating
NDN Video
'Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1' Sneak Peek NOW TRENDING: Peyton Manning dancing at practice Chapter Two: Designing for Naomi Watts "The Bachelorette" Makes Her Decision Thieves pick the wrong gas station to rob Golden Sisters on '50 Shades' trailer: 'Look At That Chest!' Staten Island Man's Emotional Dunk Over NYPD Car - @TheBuzzeronFOX GMA: Dog passes out from excitment to see owner Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Florida Keys Webcam Captures Turtles Hatching Morgan Freeman Sucks Down Helium on 'Tonight Show' Robin Wright Can Dance! (WATCH) She's Back! See Paris Hilton's New Carl's Jr. Ad Big Weekend For Atlanta Braves In Cooperstown - @TheBuzzeronFox Chapter Two: Becoming a first-time director What's Got Jack Black Freaking Out at Comic-Con? Doctors Remove 232 Teeth From Teen's Mouth Bradley Cooper Explains His Voice in 'Guardians of the Galaxy' Deja vu: Another NYPD officer choke-holding a suspect 'Fifty Shades of Grey': Watch the Super Sexy First Trailer Now!

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.