Polson Community Thanksgiving Dinner volunteers have big goals, new format

by Lake County Leader
| November 5, 2020 12:05 AM

This year’s Polson Community Thanksgiving Dinner may end up feeding more people than ever, but like everything else this year a new format will be used due to social distancing concerns.

The dinner, now in its 20th year, will be moved from the Polson Senior Center to the Elks Lodge at 512 Main St., and all meals will either be delivered or available for curbside pickup.

Lead organizer Tracy Plaiss said Monday that volunteers served 557 free meals in three hours last year, and this year they’re preparing to serve up to 800.

Plaiss said during a normal year local churches donate a large portion of the food, including pies, rolls and salads. This year, however, COVID-19 restrictions prohibit volunteers from accepting food from kitchens that aren’t certified. That means all food for this year’s meals will be made on site at the Elks Lodge.

Since there won’t be a sit-down meal service this year, Plaiss said fewer volunteers are required and they have all they need. However, monetary donations are needed to help pay for the meals, which include turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, green bean casserole, dressing, assorted salads, rolls and pie for desert. The free meals are available to anyone.

Those wishing to donate may make out checks to the Elks Club and deliver or mail them to the club at 512 Main St. in Polson. Writing “Thanksgiving Dinner” in the memo space will help ensure the donation goes to the proper place.

Those interested in a free Thanksgiving meal should call or text 406-250-7902 as soon as possible to make reservations. Include how many dinners are being requested and whether they are for pickup or delivery.

Curbside pickup will be available from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, Nov. 26, outside the front door of the Elks Club along Main Street.