One of our local grocery stores, Harris Teeter, has an annual event called the "Harvest Feast" to kick off their two-month food drive and to raise hunger awareness. They pass out tickets within the community for a free dinner at the RBC Center - the stadium where our national hockey team, The Hurricanes (Stanley Cup winners in '06 - 'go canes!') play.
This year, we were lucky enough to be a part of it. It was incredible - there must have been over 100 long tables set up with at least 12 tables serving food. Ham, roast turkey, gravy, green beans, sweet potatoes, apple pie and fresh coffee - it was an early Thanksgiving dinner! And just as delicious! They had live entertainment - we caught the "Durham Seniorette Divas Cheerleading Squad", a group of senior cheerleaders promoting health for the elderly! They also had a kid's room with free tatoos, face painting, balloon puppets and games. We played chess in the press box underneath the stadium - it was wild!
The tables were set up on big sheets of wood that covered the ice because it is, after all, hockey season! In some places the four corners didn't quite meet up so you could see the ice below. We got a kick out of poking out fingers down and touching it (yes, it was just a tad chilly in there!)
All in all, the Harvest Feast served over meals to over 4,300 people that afternoon. Since the tickets were distributed to local charitable organizations, businesses, churches and shelters, there were many people who looked like they could use a free meal. It was touching - even in our local paper there was a quote from a man who said he had prayed for food the day before and his prayers had been answered.
I'm so glad that we were a part of it - an event that brought our community together to relax and enjoy a delicious meal.