Local churches and non-profit organizations are offering free Thanksgiving meals to the public and those in need. Formats for the Thanksgiving meals have changed, compared to previous years, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Most dinners are offering a to-go format only.
In the Joplin area, there are a few organizations offering dinners.
Joplin Salvation Army, located at 320 E. 8th St., will offer a regular, hot Thanksgiving meal on Thanksgiving Day. The dinner is to-go only, but delivery is offered if called ahead. For those picking up to-go meals, it will be a walk-up format and no call ahead is needed. Contact the Joplin Salvation Army at (417) 624-4528 with questions or to place a delivery order. Volunteers are welcome to help out with the dinner.
First United Methodist Church in Joplin, located at 501 West Fourth Street, will offer a free Thanksgiving meal on Thanksgiving Day. Due to COVID-19, no inside dining will be offered. The meal is to-go and drive-through only, served from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the north parking lot of the church.
“We look forward to hosting this meal each year and the opportunity it creates to connect with our neighbors and the community,” said Marsha West Eichler, First United Methodist Church pastor.
Delivery orders are limited, call (417) 623-2796 with questions or to place an order for delivery.
Soul’s Harbor, located at 915 S Main St, will offer their Thanksgiving dinner Saturday, November 21 from 5 to 5:45 p.m. The meal is a traditional Thanksgiving dinner and is offered by to-go only. Individuals are asked to go to the back door to pick-up their meal. Call Soul’s Harbor at (417) 623-7927 with any questions.
Soul’s Harbor will also offer a typical, every day dinner on Thanksgiving Day for those interested.
In Carthage there is one available option providing dinner for Thanksgiving.
The Carthage Crisis Center, located at 100 N Main St., will offer a whole Thanksgiving dinner on Thanksgiving Day. Delivery is offered, but individuals must call ahead at (417) 358-3533 by Tuesday, November 24, before noon. Delivery is only offered to the Carthage area. The Crisis Center is in need of more volunteers to be either drivers or food runners.
In Cherokee there is also one available option serving Thanksgiving dinner for those in need.
The Cherokee United Methodist Church, located at 312 W. Magnolia, will offer a traditional Thanksgiving dinner on Thanksgiving Day. The dinner is carry-out and drive-through only. For those who cannot do carry-out or drive-through, delivery is offered; these individuals are asked to call City Hall at (620) 457-8413. Those picking up a dinner are advised to “look for the signs” to follow. The church is open to more volunteers; individuals interested are asked to call City Hall. This is the church’s 16th year serving Thanksgiving dinner to the public and last year they had about 125 people in attendance.