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Sun., Dec. 21
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Ogdensburg Amvets prepare for community Christmas dinner

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Amvets Post 19, 215 Ford St., is once again planning to warm hands, bellies and hearts this Christmas with its annual dinner.

The dinner, held on Christmas, has been held for almost 20 years. Last year, the organization served over 400 people at the hall and made close to 230 deliveries, Amvets Commander Robert G. Flavin said Thursday.

The group traditionally spends all day Christmas Eve preparing the meal using donations from the community. This year the group is looking for turkeys, dressing, cranberry sauce, and approximately 120 pounds of potatoes.

“We do need turkeys,” Mr. Flavin said. “We are definitely going to need turkeys.”

In lieu of food, the group will also accept monetary donations. The group has already begun its yearly letter-writing campaign.

“We know a lot of people can’t give much this year,” said Mr. Flavin. “But we don’t need a lot of money. A hundred five-dollar bills will mean more to me one big donation.”

Volunteers will begin delivering meals at 11 a.m. Dinner will be served from noon until 2 p.m. at the post. Members are asking for 20 to 30 volunteers from the community to help set up, and 15 to 20 delivery drivers.

“We want to make sure we have enough people so that we can ensure it gets done as quickly and efficiently as possible,” said Mr. Flavin. “We’ll be serving meals at the table. It’s a big day, but we don’t want to leave until the food runs out and all are served.”

Timothy O’Reilly, a member of the Sons of Amvets Post 19, said he enjoys working in the kitchen to prepare for the meal. He said even though the dinner is held annually by the Amvets, it is really all about the community.

“If you are home alone and would like company, it’s a great place to come down and meet some new people,” he said.

Mr. Flavin said immobile members of the community are welcome to request deliveries, but he hopes the majority of the community will join Amvets members for dinner at the hall.

“That’s why this was started all those years ago,” he said. “We would prefer everybody comes to the Amvets to eat. For us, it’s about getting members of the community together — younger and older people who may be alone — to come here and enjoy the company of each other.”

To make a donation or volunteer, call 393-6140.

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