“Moonlight and love songs / Never out of date / Hearts full of passion / Jealousy and hate / … it’s still the same old story / A fight for love and glory / … The world will always welcome lovers / As time goes by …”

— Lyrics from “As Time Goes By,” theme song of Casablanca

By Candace Cooksey Fulton — Brownwood Bulletin

Oh how sweet it is, this close to Thanksgiving, with all its possibilities of turkey and dressing and pumpkin pie.

For many, tonight will be a night for remembering, and plenty is on the plate today. But could you just look at it? The sky is blue and the wind is brisk, with not a thought of what to do with the leftovers crossing our minds, as, most likely will be the case come Thursday. For now it’s all pretty and promise — and a wonderful time of the year.

Who’s coming home? Who’s not going to try and don’t we wish they could?

Today, among about a bazillion other things, is shopping day. The stores will be crowded, but that’s OK, that’s why we’re doing it today and not next week when everything’s picked over. Today’s your best chance for finding celery, scallions, two cans of whole cranberries like Daddy likes. And among the smart folk who like their celery stuffed with pimento cheese, then you or someone better remember to buy pimentos. For me, I hope the grapefruit’s good this year. What’s breakfast Thursday morning — Thanksgiving — if you can’t have a half a Ruby Red with a teaspoon of sugar sprinkled across the top?

But, if the shopping’s done, or, if you happen not to have any shopping to do, be thankful of that and so many other sundry blessings. The weekend’s here and there’s just lots of fun things left to do. Listed below, of course, are an assorted few.

So we’ll always have the Lyric

Tonight, at last, is the night “A Night in Casablanca,” the gala benefit being hosted by The Lyric Performing Arts Company with the goal of restoring the Lyric Theatre. The gala includes dinner, play money casino games and dancing to the James Davis Orchestra, and is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. at the Depot Civic and Cultural Center, but of course, it won’t appear to be the Depot Civic and Cultural Center. Tonight it is Rick’s Cafe Americain, or an amazing facsimile.

Plans for the full restoration of the Lyric Theatre in downtown Brownwood will be unveiled, and fund-raising through the event will mean substantial progress toward that goal.

Thanksgiving feast

The Lake Brownwood First United Methodist Church, is holding a traditional Thanksgiving dinner, with turkey, dressing and all the trimmings, drinks and dessert, from 5 to 7 p.m., at the church, 5751 Highway 279. The public is welcome. Adults will be charged $7 per meal, and charge for children 12 and younger will be $4.

Operation Christmas Child

Collection hours for Operation Christmas Child are scheduled from 9 a.m. to noon today; and 3 p.m. until 5 p.m. Sunday. Shoe boxes may be delivered to Coggin Avenue’s Christian Education Center, which is located across Coggin Avenue from the main church building, next door to “the old Dairy Maid building.” For more information on how to participate in Operation Christmas Child, call Coggin Avenue Baptist Church at 646-1506 or brochures with information on suitable gifts are available at the church office, 1815 Coggin Ave.

Craft and bake sale

The May EE Club will hold a Christmas decor, craft and bake sale beginning at 8 a.m. going until whenever. Turn west at the blinking light in May to get to the clubhouse.

Angel Food distributions

For those who ordered from the “Angel Food Ministries” November menu at Central United Methodist Church, distribution is scheduled from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. today, at the church, 1501 Second St., from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m. . Distribution is scheduled from noon to 1 p.m. at the Family Life Center, Early First United Methodist Church, 1073 Early Blvd. Orders are early due to the Thanksgiving holiday.

Various and sundry

The Lake Brownwood Lions Club, 6751 Highway 279, will host bingo at 1:30 p.m. The Brownwood Amateur Radio Club’s Volunteer Examiner team hold test sessions at 10 a.m. at the Red Cross building, 600 E. Adams, Brownwood. Visit www.k5bwd.org for more information about club events. The Brown County Museum of History, located downtown in the old jail across from the courthouse, is open to the public from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. every Thursday; from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. every Friday; and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. every Saturday. For group tours and information call 641-1926.