Community Thanksgivings in Fannin County



After getting a bountiful plate of Thanksgiving goodies, the next station to visit was for a beverage. Next, the dessert table!

By Marci Watson, Staff Writer:

Every year, folks look forward to the annual Good Samaritan Community Thanksgiving Open Table. But, did you know there are other Thanksgiving community meals in the county? The Fannin Focus stopped by three community meals in the area on Thanksgiving Day to see what was going on.

First, a visit to the Good Samaritan event: At 11:30 a.m., the FCHS cafeteria was bustling with volunteers serving food and a long, hungry line of diners. To-go boxes and dine-in plates were being filled to overloaded with turkey and the trimmings. Cafeteria tables were beautifully decorated creating a genuine holiday atmosphere.

The Thanksgiving Community Meal at Copperhill UMC was served by (left to right) Judy Lackey, Ron Brittner and Anita Brittner.

Good Sam, as the non-profit is affectionately called, has hosted the Open Table for 12 years. It began as an alternative for people that couldn’t get home for Thanksgiving, didn’t have any family in the area, or single and no where to go for the national holiday. Today, children craft activities, a silent auction, entertainment and an open mic session along with the cooked-from-scratch Thanksgiving meal round out the day’s events. In 2015, a record-setting 500 meals were served at the Good Sam Open Table event.

The Good Samaritan organization would like to thank the Fannin County School System for the use of the high school cafeteria, Grilling Gangsters for smoking the turkeys and all the area businesses who contributed to making the 2016 event.

Church members of Salem #2 Baptist Church fed their community in Mineral Bluff on Thanksgiving Day.
Church members of Salem #2 Baptist Church fed their community in Mineral Bluff on Thanksgiving Day.

Over in McCaysville/Copperhill, a Community Thanksgiving Meal was served at the Copperhill United Methodist Church. Volunteers started cooking early in the morning in order to serve Thanksgiving meals. An air of fellowship filled the air of the UMC Community Room and mingled with the delicious smells of roasted turkey and baked ham with all the fixings. The Thanksgiving Community Meal was originally served in Ducktown for 20+ years before moving to Copperhill UMC.

Salem #2 Baptist Church has hosted a Community Thanksgiving Meal for the Mineral Bluff area for four years, with the tradition drawing many neighbors to come and break bread with the congregation. Elderly and shut-ins received delivered meals by the church’s pastor, Randy Hooper. Hooper even took his family along so in addition to a hot Thanksgiving meal, fellowship was also on the menu. Selected church members delivered meals to inmates at the Fannin County jail, too.

All in all, Salem Baptist enjoyed a wonderful holiday meal, giving thanks and serving the community. May God bless them richly.

The Fannin Focus wishes everyone a peaceful and blessed weekend!

The Choir from McCaysville United Methodist Church entertained diners at the Good Sam Open Table event.
The Choir from McCaysville United Methodist Church entertained diners at the Good Sam Open Table event.


Copperhill UMC’s Thanksgiving Community Meal volunteers, left to right front row, Laura Rivers, Evelyn Standen, Anita Brttner, Christine Gallen. Back row, left to right, Ron Britner, David Turner, Judy Lackey, Joy Turner, Charles Stevan, Robin Gard and Elanie Crow.


Good Sam volunteers friends and family, left to right front row: Katie Beno, , Good Sam CEO Carlie Hammond with her granddaughter Annalee Dockery,, June Escher, Brenda Scruggs. Back row, left to right: Jim Beno, FCHS representatives Nicole Reed and Denise Messer.

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One thought on “Community Thanksgivings in Fannin County

  1. Ralph Garner

    Terrific coverage for these highly successful community banquets. I attended the Open Table feast at the high school and was very impressed with how well the event was managed by Carlie Hammond and conducted by the many volunteers. I had a blast!

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