LaGRANGE — Christmas is 11 days away and organizers of the annual Up all Night Christmas dinner hope donations will start coming in as they look to feed about 700 people.
“There are a lot of people (receiving meals) now and we take more to the surrounding areas,” said organizer and event founder Jake Sessions. “Before we’d take about 300 plates around, but now we’ve doubled. We have about 700.”
Serving at its recent Thanksgiving meal, the group went through donated food that included 45 turkeys and 60 pans of dressing.
“We need more volunteers and more food,” Sessions said. “We served 953 (people) on Thanksgiving, and (the donated food) was just enough. There’s nothing left.”
Sessions noted that the Christmas meal usually doesn’t have as many people to serve and fewer volunteers, but he still needs 30 to 40 to help pull it off.
“We need volunteers the day before and day of,” he said. “We need people to be there to receive food deliveries the day before and prepare and deliver meals the next day (Christmas).”
The meals will be held at the former Cannon Street Elementary School building.
Items sought are hams, turkeys, drinks, canned vegetables, cranberry sauce, dressing, macaroni and cheese, plates, cups, carry-out containers, napkins and plastic cutlery. Monetary donations are also sought and all checks should be made payable to Up All Night Charities.
Donations may be dropped off at the following locations:
• Lakes-Dunson-Robertson Funeral Home, 201 Hamilton Road.
• Good Seed Christian Books, 205 S. Greenwood St.
• WJCN TV station, 220 Fort Drive.
• WTRP AM 620 radio station, 806 New Franklin Road — nonperishable items only. Organizer Jake Sessions, host of the “Up All Night TV” show, will be at the station daily to accept food drop offs.
Anyone seeking more information or to volunteer should contact Jake Sessions at 706-884-6963 or 706-333-1706. Those who need information in Spanish should contact Elisa Baltes at 706-298-0221 ext. 105 or 706-333-9774.
Matthew Strother is the editor of LaGrange Daily News. He may be reached at 706-884-7311, ext. 2153.