More drivers needed for 2020 Crawford AuSable Thanksgiving Dinner
Tue, 11/03/2020 - 12:04pm caleb
This year’s holiday event will be by delivery only – no gathering, no take-out
Caleb Casey | Managing Editor
More volunteer drivers are needed for the upcoming Crawford AuSable Thanksgiving Dinner, an event that will feature delivery meals only due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
This year’s Crawford AuSable Thanksgiving Dinner – the 30th in the event’s history – will not feature a gathering for the holiday meal, and people will not be able to stop by for take-out meals as in years past. The event is slated for Thanksgiving Day on Thursday, November 26.
Patty Crandall, co-director of the Crawford AuSable Thanksgiving Dinner, said “a skeleton crew” of volunteers is set to distribute the meals to drivers and coordinate the effort from the event’s normal base of operations, the Grayling Army Airfield, on Thanksgiving.
Organizers are hoping more people will be willing to serve as drivers. Crandall said more than 260 meals have been reserved so far, and organizers are expecting more than 1,000 meals to be reserved before the deadline. (To reserve a meal, call Pat at (989) 348-3275 before noon on Wednesday, November 25. If you reach voice mail, please leave a name and phone number so volunteers can return your call, organizers said.)
There is no cost to have a meal delivered.
To volunteer as a driver for the 2020 Crawford AuSable Thanksgiving Dinner, contact Crandall at (989) 745-3557.
Crandall said volunteers and drivers will be taking safety measures during this year’s event as the coronavirus pandemic continues.
“All the delivery people will have masks on. They will not be entering the homes,” Crandall said.
Crandall said drivers will not need to leave their vehicles at the Grayling Army Airfield; the volunteer crew will load the vehicles.
For the main portions of the meal, this year’s Crawford AuSable Thanksgiving Dinner will feature Marie Callender frozen dinners donated by Family Fare, organizers said. Other items – some of which will be provided by Spike’s Keg ‘O’ Nails, Lange’s Vending, and Grayling Restaurant – will include cole slaw, rolls, cranberries, and muffins.
“The hot part of the meal will need to be heated by the recipient, either microwave or oven,” Crandall said.
Crandall said organizers will miss working with their usual army of volunteers at the annual gathering.
“People have been very understanding. We’re very sorry it has to be this way, but it’s what we have to do,” Crandall said.
Organizers said many local people, businesses, organizations, and others – including the Army National Guard, which is providing refrigerator space and the use of the Grayling Army Airfield as the site for volunteers to load meals – have contributed to this year’s Crawford AuSable Thanksgiving Dinner.
“This community is so amazing in how it pulls together to make events like this happen,” Crandall said.
Crandall said people can contribute to the Crawford AuSable Thanksgiving Dinner through monetary donations. Send a check (payable to “CATD”) to: CATD, PO Box 247, Grayling, MI, 49738, or contact Crandall at (989) 745-3557 and she will pick up the donation, she said.