PUEBLO – It’s an annual Thanksgiving Day tradition in Pueblo, a community meal where thousands of folks are welcomed but it’s not happening this year.
It seems like combination of miscommunication and poor planning among the Pueblo Soup Kitchen, the Salvation Army and the Pueblo Rescue Mission left the community without a dinner.
But the Praise Assembly of God church says their doors will be wide open on Thanksgiving.
Michelle Perez, who was at the Pueblo Soup Kitchen on Wednesday, says warm meals are hard to come by.
“Sometimes I’ll go without eating one or two days until I can find my next meal,” Perez said.
To make sure folks wouldn’t skip meals around Thanksgiving, the Pueblo Soup Kitchen planned to offer a meal the Wednesday before starting at 11 a.m.
They said they thought the Salvation Army would offer a meal on Thanksgiving Day.
Except, they found out a week ago both meals are scheduled for Wednesday.
The Salvation Army will start serving at 5 p.m.
“I was very upset because had we known that, we could’ve maybe steered people in a different direction, maybe helped out the people who were trying to get the community dinner together,” said Helen Benavidez, the director of the Soup Kitchen.
And now the people organizing the community dinner are the folks of the Praise Assembly of God church.
“Our team is beefing up people and food and we’re anticipating a great day with a lot of people,” said pastor Steve Chavez.
“It’s gonna be awesome.”
They’ve offered meals on Thanksgiving Day for the past three years and even though they didn’t expect to be the only ones this year, they’re ready to serve those in need.
“We were a little bit surprised,” said Chavez.
“And also we just welcome the opportunity that you know what? People need to be fed. So Praise Assembly will step up and serve a great meal for them.”
Perez believes the effort will make a huge difference for folks like her.
“People that don’t have nobody, nowhere to go to have dinner, I think it’ll mean a lot to them,” she said.
“Because at least they have a dinner and somewhere to go for Thanksgiving.”
A warm meal and a place to go is all Perez can ask for on Thanksgiving this year, the same day as her birthday.
“At least I will have something for my birthday,” she said.
The Pueblo Rescue Mission will also be offering a third meal the day before Thanksgiving which starts at 3 p.m.
As for the Thanksgiving Day meal at Praise Assembly of God, doors will open at 1 p.m. and stay open through 3 p.m.
If you’d like to contact them to find out how you can help, their office number is 719-544-9486.