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The community is invited to enjoy a hot meal benefiting Guilford's Meals on Wheels and honoring the town's veterans at the 11th annual Lasagna Dinner on Friday, Nov. 9 beginning at 5 p.m. at the Community Center.
The special aspect of this fundraising event, according to Guilford Interfaith Ministries Joann Carson, is that Guilford gets to recognize those who served during wartime.
"We go back and forth between calling it the Lasagna Dinner and the Patriotic Dinner because it honors the veterans. This is one time where we can give back a little something to our veterans who have given so much of themselves for us," Carson said. "The Guilford Interfaith Ministries [GIM] feels strongly about honoring all their sacrifices and we've decided this is a way we can give back to them and it's just good will and being a part of the big family that is Guilford."
Veterans who reserve their spot ahead of time will get a free meal. Regular admission for adults is $10 or $6 for children under age 10.
Proceeds will go to Meals on Wheels, a program in town that provides hot meals to any Guilford resident who has difficulty preparing a well-balanced meal. Meals are delivered Monday through Friday, with about 65 volunteers helping to make that happen.
Besides the Rotary Club's annual Lobsterfest, this is Meals on Wheel's biggest fundraising event of the year. Last year's Lasagna Dinner had about 100 attendees, with about 25 veterans being honored.
"This will be the first year it's on a Friday so we're curious to see if that's going to make it easier for families to attend. We would try very hard to keep it as close to Veterans Day as possible. For a couple years that wasn't possible so then we did it around Pearl Harbor Day so it depends on the availability for the Community Center," Carson explained. "Friday is Veterans Day weekend, which works out well."
Another reason Carson said it's important to attend this event is because funds raised for the event are doubled.
"The past number of years Walmart has matched the proceeds. We go in and apply for a grant from Walmart to give us matching funds for this dinner. Last year, before the match, we raised about $1,500," said Carson. "That's another way of making good things happen that much better."
To learn more about the 11th annual Lasagna Dinner and for veterans to call ahead of time to reserve a free meal, call GIM at 203-453-8359.