A line stretched from the Lakewood Community Services Center on Madison Avenue around the corner of Roosevelt Avenue on Monday morning.
As many as 200 people braved November’s chill for an opportunity to sign up for a Thanksgiving turkey dinner.
LCSC and the Lakewood Charitable Assistance Corporation partnered again this year to provide hundreds of turkey dinners to the city’s neediest families.
LCA is donating 100 turkeys for Thanksgiving and another 100 for Christmas; while LCSC also obtained another 128 turkeys from the Cleveland Foodbank.
And it’s not just turkeys.
The clients will also receive instant mashed potatoes, canned vegetables and other goodies.
Horace Mann Elementary School and the Lakewood Catholic Academy are also donating the ingredients for pumpkin pies.
There’s one catch: participants must choose between Thanksgiving or a Christmas dinner.
“Because there’s just so many people coming through,” said Trish Rooney, the director of Lakewood Community Services Center. “I mean, we’re serving 3,000 people a month.”
Rooney said that by the end of the year, the organization will finish with 10,000 “unduplicated” clients, who each stop at the center an average of four times per year.
“It’s unbelievable,” she said. “It’s about 20 percent of the population of the city.”
Ronney said that 66 percent of the clients have an income of less than $10,000 per year.
“How can you make it on that?” she said.