Equinox Annual Thanksgiving Community Dinner preparations underway


CAPITAL REGION, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Equinox’s 52nd Annual Thanksgiving Community Dinner is underway. With the community’s tremendous support of the redesign of the Annual Thanksgiving Dinner last year, Equinox is continuing to safely provide a holiday meal to thousands of neighbors in need.

The T-Day Hotline is officially open to take recipient and volunteer phone calls, and 30 hotline volunteers are working from home again. “With COVID, it was a blessing in disguise because it forced us to look at the Thanksgiving dinner and how to redesign it, due to the variants of COVID we’re still being vigilant,” said Christina Rajotte, the director of development and marketing at Equinox.

To volunteer as a delivery driver or request a meal, call the T-Day Hotline at (518) 434-0131 or send an email. The T-Day hotline volunteers will be happy to get back to you. The deadline for meal orders is November 19.

Equinox is repeating what they did last year. They are raising funds to purchase dinners from local restaurants and caterers. The turkeys were donated by Price Chopper, and restaurants will cook the turkeys and supply the rest of the meal. Once cooked, meals will be delivered to the recipient’s front door.

“From a recipient standpoint, their meals will be delivered Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday with a small percentage going out on Thursday. We will tell them what time the driver might arrive at the earliest then they need to give us a 4-hour window,” said Nancy Virkler, hotline coordinator. “They do need to be home, if they’re not home, we cannot leave the food it will spoil.”

“Last year, we were so touched by the community’s phenomenal response to our fundraising campaign, which was led by many of our long-time T-Day volunteers. With this support, we were able to purchase more than 10,500 meals with all the trimmings,” Rajotte said. “We turn to our generous community, again this year, to raise $100,000, so we can continue to preserve this cherished community tradition and meet all the needs so no one is without a holiday meal.”

Surplus donations will benefit other Equinox programs, which provide support and opportunity—365 days a year—to youth and adults impacted by domestic violence, addictions, mental health disorders, and homelessness.

Restaurants and Food Services partners include: 2Shea Catering-Albany, 677 Catering-Albany, B-Rads
Bistro & Catering-Albany, CDPHP/Eurest Food Service Company-Albany (donating 1,000 meals),
Hamilton Street Café-Albany, Iron Gate Café-Albany, Old Daley Catering-Crooked Lake, Old Daley
Catering-Schenectady, Old Daley Catering-Troy, Pepper Jacks-Albany, Saati Catering-Newton Plaza
Latham, and Sammy Cohen’s Restaurant-Schaghticoke. These partners will safely prepare the special
Thanksgiving meals, with contact-free delivery by hundreds of Equinox volunteer delivery drivers.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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