By Ellen Thompson/Havre Daily Newsfirstname.lastname@example.org
Bob Bergren and his family expect a lot of people for Christmas dinner - 750, give or take.
For the second year, Bergren will sponsor the Community Christmas Dinner, inviting all of Havre to join him. Last year 250 meals were delivered to people's homes and more than 600 people attended the event, he said.
Bergren hopes to see the same number of people join him at the Eagles Club between noon and 3 p.m. Saturday.
"It's not for the shut-ins and withouts only," he said. "We call it a community Christmas dinner."
People who want to help deliver meals, prepare food or serve food can call the North Central Senior Citizens Center or Bergren to sign up.
"If they come down for all day or if they come down for an hour, it's a great experience," Bergren said.
The senior center is collecting a list of people who would like meals delivered to their home.
Bergren, who is a state representative and a Havre firefighter, said he was pleased when he realized that the community dinner was also an opportunity to eat with his extended family.
"Last year my family spent the most time we ever spent together on Christmas," he said. Normally family members visit one another at different homes throughout the day. "Our whole extended family was together all day," he said.
Ernie Hoffman has said he will provide some entertainment and Bergren's father, Jerry Bergren, has volunteered the kitchen at his restaurant, PJ's, for food preparation. Food also will be prepared at the Eagles.
There were 40 volunteers last year and Bergren said he expects that if the same number helps out, the dinner will go smoothly.
Bergren has also guaranteed the balance of the dinner, should donations not cover the full cost.
Anyone who would like to add a donation to help pay for the meal can write a check out to Havre Community Christmas and send it in care of Community Christmas Dinner, U.S. Bank, 235 First St., Havre, MT 59501.