As Thanksgiving nears, Open Table in Maynard prepared premade Thanksgiving meals for those in need.
On Monday, Nov. 13, the pantry assembled in its kitchen 500 Thanksgiving meals for distribution. Executive Director Alex DePalo told the Daily News that the food pantry planned to distribute “make your own Thanksgiving kits” and between 850 to 900 prepared Thanksgiving meals this year. The food pantry also made vegan Thanksgiving meals to accommodate dietary restrictions.
In addition, Open Table also works with other local agencies to distribute food to people in need.
“We don’t compete, we collaborate,” said DePalo, who previously served as Framingham’s director of public health. “Because getting to Maynard is unrealistic for some people, we have a deliver partnership model where we partner with trusted organizations like churches and schools to get meals out to people.”
Open Table has a staff of volunteers to help with distribution. Laura Inouye, of West Concord, has been volunteering for more than a year.
“It’s really important because everyone needs to eat,” she said. “It breaks my heart to see families of five, six and 10 sometimes struggling to get food.”
Distribution was conducted through Open Table’s drive-through system at its 33 Main St. location in Maynard. To order food and other resources, visit its www.opentable.org/programs/.
Other MetroWest and Greater Milford food pantries with Thanksgiving programs include:
United Way of Tri-County
Pearl Street Cupboard and Cafe, 46 Park St., Framingham; Marlborough Community Cupboard, 255 Main St., Marlborough; and WHEAT Community Connections, 272 High St., Clinton
For decades, the United Way of Tri-County has been offering free community programs and services for underprivileged and underserved individuals and families in 35 communities.
In a statement, CEO Paul Mina said the organization’s goal this holiday season is to provide a turkey and “all the fixings” to 3,000 families.
But it won’t come easy.
“2023 has been exceptionally difficult,” Mina said. “We are struggling to provide enough food for our clients this holiday season. Everywhere we go, grocery items are unavailable, or prices are incredibly inflated, so we are reaching out to the community for help.”
Can you help? To donate, visit the United Way’s website at www.uwotc.org/feed or text “FEED” to 91999. Checks can be mailed to the United Way of Tri-County, Feed-A-Family, 46 Park St., Framingham, MA 01702.
Daniel’s Table partners with Jack’s Abby
10 Pearl St. Framingham
Daniel’s Table, a nonprofit, is collaborating with Framingham brewery Jack’s Abby Craft Lagers to provide registered guests with a full Thanksgiving dinner.
Daniel’s Table is giving guests a choice of a turkey or a chicken, with side dishes provided by Jack’s Abby. Guests will also be provided with a week’s worth of groceries. Distribution takes place from 3-6 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 22.
The Daily Bread Food Pantry
21 Exchange St., Milford
The family-owned Daily Bread Food Pantry is providing turkeys for families in need.
The pantry, founded by Cheryl and John DeAngelo in October 1991, and is led by their son, Francis DeAngelo.
The Worcester County Food Bank in Shrewsbury provided turkeys and gift cards for Daily Bread’s clients. In addition, the pantry purchased an additional 200 gift cards from local grocery stores due to stores not accepting large orders of turkeys.
Food is distributed on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6-7:30 p.m.
Celebration International Church food pantry
6 Loker St. Wayland
Celebration International Church’s food pantry’s mission is to serve MetroWest residents by providing groceries in a time of need. As part of its yearly “Turkey Express,” Celebration International Church Food Pantry handed out turkeys and a free bag of food for people who previously signed up.
Franklin Food Pantry
341 West Central St., Franklin
Along with its yearly Turkey Trot, the Franklin Food Pantry plans to give out holiday meals again this year.
The food pantry on Saturday planned to distribute gift cards to be used toward a main course, side dishes, a dessert and rolls, as well as some holiday-themed dishes. Due to high demand, those who were placed on a wait list will receive meals on Monday, Nov. 20.