CALUMET - Seniors sat down for hearty meals and good conversation at tables across the Copper Country Thursday as part of Little Brothers Friends of the Elderly's annual Thanksgiving dinner.
This year is Little Brothers' 30th anniversary in the area. David King, who was running the dinner at Sacred Heart Church in Calumet, said his family has been involved since sometime in the early 1980s. His daughter, who now lives in the Pittsburgh area, wishes there was a Little Brothers group there.
"She laments that her kids can't have that experience," he said. "She said Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter just don't seem complete without a Little Brothers dinner."
Garrett Neese/Daily Mining Gazette
Diners enjoy Thanksgiving dinner at Sacred Heart Church in Calumet Thursday courtesy of Little Brothers Friends of the Elderly.
The Calumet dinner averages around 60 people, King said. The serving process, honed throughout the years and preserved in a notebook, gets dishes out to everyone within five minutes. There's a dedicated staff of about two dozen volunteers as well, many of whom have been volunteering for years, King said.
"We encourage them to sit with the elderly guests to eat, because the elderly people enjoy the chance to talk to younger people," he said.
Marcy Kunnari of Laurium has been coming for about three years. As usual, she brought her neighbors to the dinner. She said it's a good opportunity to see people and visit.
"We're very fortunate in this country to have what we have," she said. "And we're fortunate for Little Brothers. A lot of people wouldn't have a meal if it weren't for them."
Dinners were also held at St. Anne's Church in Baraga, Holy Family Catholic Church in Ontonagon, Doelle Senior Center in Tapiola, Grace Lutheran Church in South Range, St. Ignatius Loyola Church in Houghton, Church of the Resurrection in Hancock, the Copper City Community Building and the Houghton County Medical Care Facility in Hancock.
Hot meal delivery sites were Grace United Methodist Church in Houghton and Laurium Apostolic Lutheran Church.