A great community feast and true community event kicked off the Christmas season in festive fashion Wednesday night, Nov. 27, at the Cristoforo Colombo Lodge in Cranbrook.
The 38th annual Rotary/Colombo Seniors Dinner — the largest yearly event for seniors in southeast BC — served more than 400 turkey dinners to diners, with the turkeys, the stuffing, the vegetables, all the trimmings, ice cream for dessert, and rum punch.
It truly takes a village to provide this feast — a host of volunteers from the Colombo Lodge, Cranbrook Rotary, Cranbrook City Council and others prepped, cooked, served and cleaned up after.
Rotarians had started prepping the meals on Sunday.
As well as Rotarians and Cranbrook Italian community, others pitch in to help create the repast.
Rick’s Meats donated 300 pounds of fresh turkey every year for the dinner. Fort Steele Bakery provided fresh rolls, Safeway donated all the cut bread to make the stuffing.
Kootenay Kwik Print printed the tickets to the event at no charge. The Heritage Inn sold them at the front desk no charge. The band Old Spice provided music for dancing after supper.
And afterwards, JJ’s Laundry cleans the vast piles of linens used, at no charge.
Rotary donates all monies raised through ticket sales back to the Cranbrook Senior Citizens’ Club, the Food Bank and the Salvation Army.
The festive feast tradition was started in 1982 by George Georgopoulus, owner of the Apollo Restaurant at the time. He held it in the basement of his restaurant at first, but shortly after, the event moved up to the Colombo Lodge and over the years has become a joint effort between the Rotary Club of Cranbrook and the Colombo Lodge.