Woodstock Community Holiday Potluck on Christmas Day

Dear Neighbor, Friend, Woodstocker

Every holiday for the past 20 years or more, Woodstockers have celebrated Christmas with others in the Community Center at the annual Potluck on Christmas Day.

We all have stories and memories  as we celebrated the holiday there while we ate too much delicious food and visited with relatives, friends, neighbors.  We swapped stories, caught up on the news.

This annual potluck dinner on Christmas Day  is a true community event with everyone participating by bringing a prepared dish, helping decorate and set up the room, and then afterward, cleaning up.

This year is no exception. Toni Weidenbacher, as always,  is  at the helm.  And, this year is no exception as Toni asks for our participation.

Just as in all the other years, preparation is  needed to pull off Woodstock’s most meaningful and important event which seems like a mountain that can’t be climbed.

But, always, just as in all the other years, I know you’ll step up.  With every dollar you contribute, with every food item you donate, with every hour you volunteer, with every story you share at the potluck, you bring us all in  town one step closer to the best Community Holiday Potluck on Christmas Day ever.

And, for you to really feel like this Christmas Day Potluck is the best ever, you need to give of yourself in the preparations.  When you give, you feel as if the event is really a part of you.  You’ll have more fun that way!

What does Toni need?  What does the Potluck on Christmas Day need?  What does the community need?  Well, that depends on what you can do.

Can you bring a cooked dish…prepared and ready to serve?

Can you send a few dollars to Toni?  The funding for this year’s Potluck has disappeared.  Contact Toni at toniweidenbacher@gmail.com or at 845-679-7281.

Can you go around town on Christmas  morning  and pick up dishes that someone in the community prepared?

Can you give a child a nice Christmas gift?  Gifts are needed for all ages and all stages.

Can you donate fresh vegetables for the salad?  Someone has already donated the greens.  About 400 people are expected to attend so about 100 tomatoes are needed.  (Just to give you an idea of what might be on the list.)

For every thing you can do for the Holiday Potluck on Christmas Day at the Community Center, we are all truly, deeply, profoundly grateful – this year and every year.

Happy Holidays,

And thank you in advance for spreading the news about this article.  Please tell everyone.

Thank you for reading this article.  Please refer this post to your preferred social media network.

Peace and food for all.

Thurman Greco

Woodstock, New York


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A Holiday Thank You Dear Reader

Dear Reader

In the spirit of the holiday season, I thank each of you for supporting my work and following the story of hungry people in America.  This has been a busy year for me.  Without your support, none of it would be possible.  However you discovered this blog and whatever keeps you returning, I thank you.

Each new reader who learns something new from the story of hungry people in America and each new reader who finds information about  the situation inspires me to continue working .  Thank you.

Each person who buys a copy of “I Don’t Hang Out in Churches Anymore” validates the story.  Each person who finds the booth at the Mower’s Meadow Flea Market strengthens  ripples of abundance and knowledge which are created there.  Thank you.

Each person who puts a dime or a dollar or many dollars in the donation jar at the booth supports the effort to feed the  hungry in our great nation.   Each person’s generosity increases the awareness of the situation.  Thank you.

Please continue reading the articles.  Your readership allows me to share the awareness, strengthening ripples of abundance even more. Thank you.

The Mower’s Meadow Flea Market closes over the winter and does not open again until May.  I seek an indoor market to winter over  where I can continue to tell  the story of the hungry in America.

Please drop by my booth wherever I am.  In the Spring, I hope to offer Reiki sessions, copies of the second edition of “A Healer’s Handbook”,  and unique bracelets designed by Michele Garner, the artist who designed the cover of “I Don’t Hang Out in Churches Anymore”.

 


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Barn Duty at the Food Pantry

It snowed a little bit last Saturday when I was at Mower’s Meadow and more is expected this week.  The books and clothing all got a mini dusting of the first snow of the season.

Whenever that happens (the first snow of the season) I always  remember one of the first things I learned about the Woodstock community and its residents when I moved here:  Labor Day means we pack away our dreams of a summer moon and drag out the brand new boots we were  waiting to put on.

And, further into the memory is the afternoons in the pantry when the cold was so cold and Bob Otto and Tony Cannistra  about froze to death in the barn.  They   distributed frozen food to the shoppers from that dirt floored room in the unpainted, uninsulated, unheated  building behind the church parking lot.

Even though the pantry couldn’t open until 3:00, Bob and Tony unlocked the barn and got to work at 2:30.  “Come on over!” they called to the crowd gathered in the parking lot.  “We’ve got chopped meats, cutlets, steaks, roasts, mac and cheese packages, frozen juices.”

2:30 in the parking lot was described by some of the volunteers as a circus.  I lovingly thought of it as a bus station in a third world country.  And, actually, I thought of it as more than that.

I once spent a couple of hours in an out-of-the-way airport in  Venezuela that was overcrowded with hundreds of gold miners who  themselves waited for planes.  They either waited for planes to get further into the interior of the country to hunt for gold or they waited for planes to return to civilization to sell what they found.  Whatever their destination, the place was packed.

But, whether we were all coming or going at the pantry, we were in a hurry, too.

In the pantry, we were always in a hurry.  The crowd was always larger than the hallway, the parking lot, and the barn entrance.  And, they wanted to get the long wait behind them  so they could have a two or three minute  shopping spree in the tiny room.

And, after the shopping, they were always in a hurry to get their new found food home because the event had taken all afternoon.  For some, it took more than just all afternoon because they got to the pantry late morning.  Hitch hikers started out early and, if they got a ride quickly, they were in the parking lot before noon.

My memory always includes a vision of Bob and Tony  taking turns to come into the hallway to warm up, whatever that meant.  Even though the hallway was crowded, there was just not quite enough body heat generated to call the place cozy…or even cool.  The place was cold.

I never said a word about the temperature because I was afraid that if I did the volunteers would walk off.  I just went about my business pretending that I wasn’t wearing two sweaters under my coat.  Volunteers made statements about the temperature of the hallway as they wore two hats.

“My hands are frozen!” Bob always remarked as he briskly rubbed them together, hoping the friction would get the heat going.  Just outside the door to the building, Bob  stomped his feet, trying to get some feeling into his cold toes.

Tony was less vocal but just as cold when he got his short break.  I always suspected that he had a small hidden flask to help warm himself up.  How else could he be so calm about fingers one degree away from frost bite?  I never saw any evidence but it was the only excuse I could find for a person in such cold weather conditions.

Because, not only were the two men standing in the cold, they were handling frozen meats, vegetables, fruits, juices.  All of it came rock solid frozen from the food bank.

Before the pantry opened, Tony also doubled as the parking lot manager which put him in the middle of the confusion.  Just the parking lot was a fulltime toughie job.  But, somehow, Tony made the parking lot and the barn distribution look easy.

But, no one complained.  Ever.  They had gotten a three-day-supply of food a week ago and it was all gone now.  They were hungry.  They were the struggling poor.

Thank you for reading this article.  Please share it with  your favorite social media network.

Thurman Greco

Woodstock, New York


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Thank You! Thank You! Thank You!

On behalf of Chip, Lulu, Sport, Bubba, and the many dogs shopping at the Mower’s Meadow Flea Market every week, thank you for generously sharing your tennis balls with the  Woodstock Dog Park.

With your continued generosity, we can give them out every weekend and Wednesday the flea market is open!

We give them out on flea market day to all the four footers shopping.  They Love Them!  We can’t thank you enough for your generosity.

In addition to making  the dogs visiting the flea market happy, this distribution introduces the Woodstock Dog Park to many families who had no idea there is a dog park on Dixon Avenue.

Your generosity is appreciated by all the people with booths in the flea market.  We all love seeing the dogs carrying tennis balls.

The Mower’s Meadow Flea Market will be closed after Thanksgiving weekend until the Spring.  IF you continue sharing the tennis balls with us, I’ll hold them until the market opens in the Spring because I’ve reserved a space for the next season..

The bottom line is that, as long as you share the tennis balls, dogs all over Woodstock will enjoy chasing tennis balls!  It’s a favorite sport of many local pets!

THANKS AGAIN!

Woodstock Dog Park

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Thurman Greco

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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