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Family to host community feast in Lemasters

November 23, 2008|By JENNIFER FITCH

LEMASTERS, Pa. -- By now, shopping for enough food to serve more than 500 people has gotten to be routine for Jayne Metcalfe.

The Mercersburg, Pa.-area woman sounded carefree Sunday night when she talked about what many people would consider an immense task. She will be shopping for and then preparing turkey, ham, mashed potatoes, string beans and more for all the people who fill the Lemasters Community Center from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Thanksgiving, as well as for 113 others who requested deliveries.

Metcalfe said her family didn't once consider not hosting their fifth annual meal, despite the state of the economy.

"It's a way for my family to give back to the community. ... I don't want anyone to be alone on Thanksgiving," she said.

The most rewarding aspect, Metcalfe said, is "when somebody comes up to me and says, 'You don't realize how much it means to me to have a place to go.'"

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Some of those people come from families with homes too small to host every relative.

Recently, the Beam family of 10 from Shippensburg, Pa., called for a reservation. In the process, they offered to bring their instruments and provide gospel bluegrass music for other guests.

Metcalfe expects 20 to 30 people to volunteer at her annual "potato-peeling party" to get hundreds of pounds of potatoes ready. She already has a freezer full of applesauce made from three bushels of apples.

Diners "come back for the sweets. We have a lot of bakers who donate," Metcalfe said.

Reservations are preferred and can be made by calling 717-328-2366 as soon as possible.

Also in Waynesboro, Pa., Waynesboro Area Human Services will provide a free dinner at the Evangelical Lutheran Church, 43 S. Church St., from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Thursday.

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