Riverview Thanksgiving DinnerTeaming up with the South Hillsborough County Service Center advisory board and Beanie’s Family Sports Grill, the Ruskin Chamber of Commerce plans to lull the pangs of hunger for 500 people at the upcoming SouthShore’s Big Give in Ruskin. According to Executive Director Melanie Morrison, of the Ruskin Chamber of Commerce, “This year, there are so many more people that are not only homeless, but just ‘in need,’ mainly because of the current condition of our economy.” Taking place on Thursday, November 27, at 11 a.m. at Beanie’s Family Sports Grill, located at 2002 U.S. Hwy. 41 S. in Ruskin, a feast of turkey and all the traditional sides of Thanksgiving Day dinner will be served. The chamber is welcoming any residents who would like to start the spread of holiday cheer through the offering of their time. Volunteers are needed for the set-up of the event, the serving of food, the breakdown of the event and with the collecting of donations. If time is not on your side Thanksgiving Day, the chamber is also welcoming cash donations for tents, tables and chairs as well as food donations including bread, potatoes, green beans, cranberry, stuffing, turkeys and desserts. Paper or plastic table settings are in need as well. And on the other side of the spectrum, residents are also encouraged to mention the upcoming event to anyone in the SouthShore area who may be in need of a good meal. The first-time event is headed by committee members Morrison, Beth Howard of SouthShore Gallery, Tony Zipperer of Zipperer’s Funeral Home, Ron Simpson of Weichert Realtors – SouthShore, John Lawson of Hydro Harvest Farms and Debbie and Beanie (Don) Teachy of Beanie’s Family Sports Bar & Grill. Along with the contributions of the committee, local organizations such as the Ruskin Advisory Committee and the South Hillsborough Community Cupboard, a nonprofit in Ruskin, also plan to sponsor the event, while South Bay Hospital plans to donate 25 turkeys. “This is a wonderful way to reach out to these people who are right here in your very own community, to show them that you care. It’s a great lesson to teach your children to get involved and at the same time ‘be thankful’ of what they have,” exclaims Morrison, concluding, “On Thanksgiving Day it would give everyone something extra to be thankful for. It’s definitely a win-win for the entire community.” To make a donation, get involved or learn about the dinner, call the chamber at 645- 3808 or the center at 671-7647, ext 222.

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Carisa is a Senior News Reporter and Assistant Editor at the Osprey Observer. When she's not at work, she continues to write, working on future projects; hangs out with friends and family, her best friend (aka her husband) and her four dogs.