COVID concerns nix community Thanksgiving feast

Special to the Bulletin
Howard Payne University has suspended the hosting of the annual Community Thanksgiving Feast this year.

Because of concerns related to COVID-19, Howard Payne University has decided to suspend the hosting of the annual Community Thanksgiving Feast this year with hopes of being able to continue the tradition in 2021.

The university is unable to prepare and serve the number of meals normally provided at the event and abide by the governor’s most recent order limiting capacity in the Mabee University Center cafeteria or provide social distancing necessary for a crowd of the size customary for the event.

Event organizer Bill Fishback, associate vice president for business and human resources at HPU, expressed regret for this hiatus in this much-loved tradition.

“While we are supportive of COVID-19 precautions and are taking this step to help ensure the safety of those who might otherwise take part in the event, we are sad to be unable to host the community for the 37th annual Thanksgiving meal,” Fishback said. “We hope those who enjoy the meal and the volunteers who make it possible understand we are suspending the meal for a year attempting to do what we can to slow the spread of COVID-19 in our community. We look forward to being able to host our friends and neighbors in 2021.”

Howard Payne University encourages supporters of the Community Thanksgiving Feast to support the “Tackle Hunger” program at Good Samaritan Ministries that prepares Christmas boxes full of food that is distributed to people in the community. Those who are interested can learn more about “Tackle Hunger” by calling Good Samaritan Ministries at 325-643-2273 and donations can be mailed to P.O. Box 1136, Brownwood, Texas 76804.