Island Feast | Cornucopia of friends, food at senior Thanksgiving
By ELIZABETH CELMS
Mercer Island Reporter Contributor
November 24, 2009 · Updated 4:07 PM
Nearly 100 seniors gathered at the Mercer Island Community Center last Thursday for the annual senior Thanksgiving lunch. Live music filled the room as silverware clanked beneath undulating conversation. Dining on a sumptuous dish of gravy-covered turkey, mashed and sweet potatoes, with a colorful side of green beans, the group celebrated a traditional Thanksgiving feast one week early.
“It’s just beautiful,” said senior Donna Floyde of the event.
Floyde, a Hood Canal resident, attended as Islander Robert Long’s guest. Long, who has lived on Mercer Island since 1972, is a regular to the city’s Parks and Recreation senior lunch program. He looks forward to the Thanksgiving gathering every year.
“I rely on other people to cook for me,” he said with a laugh. “The food here is wonderful.”
A collaborative group of Island volunteers puts on the Thanksgiving lunch, which started out as a potluck years ago. Today, the school district takes care of baking the turkey and pie — Mercer Island High School cook Carol Bus and her kitchen crew, to be exact — while Parks and Recreation volunteer coordinator Jeannette Eggebrecht prepares her famous sweet potatoes and beans.
This year, members of the Mercer Island Women’s Club volunteered to serve those attending the luncheon. After slicing and CoolWhipping a table full of pies — pumpkin, pecan and apple — the women bustled throughout the crowded room, passing out each senior’s favorite dessert with a smile.
“This is one of our most popular events,” Eggebrecht said. “The seniors always love it.”
The room full of packed, round tables — not one chair empty — was testimony to that.
For more information on Parks & Recreation volunteer opportunities or senior services, call Jeannette Eggebrecht at 275-7841.