TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Close to 1,000 people ate a warm meal thanks to the Salvation Army Thanksgiving Dinner on Thursday.
“Turkey, mashed potatoes, dinner rolls, anything really,” said 14-year-old Hazel Sparks when asked what she was excited to eat this Thanksgiving.
The Salvation Army’s Thanksgiving Dinner is something her family looks forward to each year.
“It’s kind of like a family tradition for us,” said Hazel’s mom Angelica Sparks. “This has been here for so many years for us.”
Angelica Sparks has gone to the Salvation Army’s Thanksgiving Dinner since she was a child. She said she started going at the age of seven and now brings her own children.
“We would sit around the tables and there were people from all different walks of life, but it’s such a time of giving and loving,” she said.
Although times have changed, the Thanksgiving tradition has lived on.
“It’s a little different this year than any other year but it’s still a blessing,” said Angelica Sparks. “We are grateful because they give out to the community a lot and it’s really needed right now.”
About 30 volunteers helped to make the annual event happen.
“There are still people caring for them,” said Ellen Oh, a captain for the Salvation Army. “That this meal will bring warmth and peace to their special day.”
For Hazel, the chance to spend time with her family is making this Thanksgiving extra special.
“My mom came over,” she said. “She’s not always with us all the time so it’s a blessing.”
The Salvation Army’s Toy Distribution sign-up for low-income families is Nov. 28 from 9 a.m. to noon at the Hospitality House on 1002 N. Main Avenue, Tucson, AZ 85705. An ID, your child’s birth certificate and proof of Tucson residency is required. Children must be zero to 12-years-old.