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Community Christmas Dinner: New management, same old spirit

 

December 18, 2013

File photo

Volunteers smile while serving food at the 2011 Community Christmas Dinner.

There will be a change of management for the annual Havre Community Christmas Dinner this year.

The Bergren family will retire after running the event for a decade. The Bergrens took up the work after Bob Sivertsen ran the show for more than 20 years.

For all that time, the meal was served up at the Havre Eagles Club, and Tom Farnham, Eagles manager, said club members couldn't imagine having a Christmas without the dinner, so they took over the operations.

"It's such a community tradition, we wanted to take it over," he said.

But people who attend the annual meal won't notice the difference, he said. It will be the same fine food and the same sense of community and Christmas spirit.

Farnham said it is always heart-warming to see the variety of people who attend the dinner.

There are elderly couples who find it easier to go out to dinner than cook at home sitting next to people who have no family in the area and young couples with children who have spent all their money on Christmas gifts.

There is always tremendous camaraderie between the groups, he said.

Donations are accepted but certainly not required, he said. No one checks to see who made a contribution, he said.

Deliveries are made between 10 and 11 a.m, and the line starts up at 11 a.m. and runs to 3 p.m., he said.

People who would like to have meals delivered should call the Senior Citizens Center by 5 p.m. Monday. The number is 265-5464. Volunteers who have worked in the past - some for many years running - are encouraged to come back, he said. New volunteers interested in helping out can show up, and they will be put to work, serving food, cooking, waiting on tables or cleaning up, he said.

While his organization is coordinating the effort, "it's the community that is putting it on," he said.

"This is a great community."

 

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