News From Terre Haute, Indiana

November 22, 2013

The Landing joins in effort

Employees, bus drivers to donate time during financial crunch

Staff Report
The Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — Yet another door has opened to help families and individuals in need of a Thanksgiving meal, through The Landing at Fort Harrison.

The Landing is offering free Thanksgiving dinners from noon to 3 p.m. Thursday.

“We knew there was a need,” said Kristen Hutchins, banquet coordinator at The Landing.

The Landing, along the Wabash River west of U.S. 41, just north of Fort Harrison Road, contacted local charitable organizations, such as Catholic Charities and the Light House Mission, to assess the need, Hutchins said. As a result, The Landing is prepared to serve hundreds of people a buffet-styled meal for the holiday.

Transportation to and from The Landing will also be available. Buses, donated by the Boys and Girls Club, will be leaving each half hour beginning at 11:30 a.m., from the Light House Mission at 1450 Wabash Ave. and from Bethany House at 1402 Locust St. The buses will continue to pick up at those locations until 2:30 p.m.

“This is a tremendous service for the community,” said Paul Shaw, chief operating officer for the Light House Mission, which each year provides hundreds of Thanksgiving meals to needy families.

The mission also provides hundreds of food baskets each year. However, because of financial stress, this year the mission was having trouble meeting all of the need for food baskets in the community. As a result, several organizations have stepped forward to help, including The Landing.

As of Friday afternoon, about 350 people were expected at The Landing on Thanksgiving, Hutchins said. Their names have been provided by the social service agencies.

It’s not too late to sign up for the dinner. Anyone in need can contact Catholic Charities beginning Monday at 812-232-1447. Registration will not be available over the weekend through Catholic Charities.

Two Vigo County School Corp. bus drivers are volunteering their time to drive the buses. All of the Landing staff members are volunteering their time, Hutchins said.

“I think it will be very rewarding,” she said.