Side dishes sought for community dinner

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— Ambrosia salad and mashed potatoes are on the menu Thursday when LIFT-UP Food Bank and the Routt County United Way host the community Thanksgiving dinner from 2 to 5 p.m. at the Steamboat Springs Community Center. At least they will be if kind-hearted people prepare their favorite side dishes and deliver them to the community center.

United Way Director Millie Beall said Thursday she has an ample number of volunteers to help serve the meal, and the turkey and stuffing are already covered. Each year, however, it's touch and go as to whether there will be enough side dishes.

LIFT-UP's Pat Zabel, who is in charge of the food, is hoping people will find time to bring a fully cooked side dish in a disposable container (don't worry about a serving spoon) before dinner is served on Thursday. For convenience, volunteers will be on hand to accept dishes on Wednesday evening from 6 to 8 p.m. People who prefer may bring their dishes to the community center beginning at 11 a.m. on Turkey Day.

Last year's dinner served between 300 and 350 people, Beall said, and everyone is welcome.

"All of the students at Colorado Mountain College, the Ski Corp. kids all are welcome," Beall said. "The entire high school honor society is taking care of the pies this year."

Beall said some families discover the meaning of the holiday by preparing a dish for the community dinner.

"I've had people call saying their family won't be in town this year and they want to help," Beall said. "Some people involve their children in preparing the food because they want them to experience doing things for others."

People interested in cooking may call Zabel at 879-0233.

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