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Joe Salem Dinner serves Thanksgiving with friends

Posted at 10:10 AM, Nov 28, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-28 11:35:34-05

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — If you’re looking for a Thanksgiving meal, all you have to do is stop by Sokol Hall for the annual Joe Salem Community Thanksgiving Dinner.

The free Joe Salem Thanksgiving dinner has been a staple here in South Texas since 1943.

Seventy-six years ago local businessman and philanthropist Joe Salem created a special event to serve people in the community who didn’t have the means or the ability to prepare a traditional home-cooked Thanksgiving meal for themselves, or who otherwise might not have anyone to share the holiday with. Salem hosted this Thanksgiving meal until his death in April 2001. He was 80 years old.

Every year, the event draws hundreds of guests from all walks of life, whether they can afford a Thanksgiving meal or not.

More than 150 people are volunteering their time to help with this year’s menu that consists of a turkey leg, mashed potatoes and gravy, green beans, cranberry sauce, pecan pie, apple pie, and fruit bags to go.

Volunteers are expected to help feed between 500-700 people; the community is invited to stop by and grab a free plate from noon to 2 p.m.

Volunteers who want to help with serving in the kitchen can contact Elaine Medina at 361-331-2006.

This annual event used to be held at the Boys and Girls Club, but organizers wanted a bigger venue in order to feed more people. Now for a fourth-straight year, it will be held at Sokol Hall at 5502 Kostoryz Dr.