Thanksgiving is right around the corner and if you're like me, then you're already salivating, thinking of a dinner table filled to maximum capacity to feed a small army. Many of us forget that so many people don't get to enjoy such a glorious meal and for different reasons. Some are elderly and on their own. Even If they still have the ability to still cook such a meal, it makes no sense to cook Thanksgiving for one or even two. Then you have the folks who can't afford such an extravagant meal for their families.

The cost of Thanksgiving dinner can be high in a regular year, but this year, the cost of Thanksgiving is expected to reach an all-time high according to CBS News thanks to inflation. Last year the average cost of the dinner was $47 and will be around 5% more this year. Some families just can't shell out that kind of money for one meal so thank goodness for an upcoming FREE Community Dinner in Oneonta that is an annual tradition.

This community Thanksgiving dinner is take-out or delivery only and is once again being offered in Oneonta on November 25th from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m., organized by St. Mary's Church. Pickups will take place at the Lord's Table at 18 Elm St., Oneonta on Thanksgiving Day. This is a popular meal so order early. According to co-organizer John Korb, last year volunteers served up 800 meals with over 600 of those being delivered.

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Remember, no need to worry about cost, it's absolutely free with no questions asked. Here's how to get a meal or meals:

For delivery or take-out meals contact Deb Bruce at 607 - 433 – 0356 or email by Monday, 11/22.

To help pay for this wonderful community service, monetary donations will be gratefully accepted. You can send a check (with "Thanksgiving in the memo line) to:
St. Mary's Church
39 Walnut
Oneonta, N.Y. 13820

If you would like to volunteer, people are needed as drivers, cooks, for food prep, serving, and cleanup. Please contact Cindy Korb at 607-267-0539 or by Friday, 11/19 to inquire about volunteering.

13 Upstate Food Favorites You Can't Buy Outside of New York State

Upstate New York is the home to many fantastic food favorites. Mention sponge candy to somebody 100 miles outside Buffalo and you are probably going to get a blank stare. Mention a Michigan hot dog to anybody not from around Plattsburgh. Same stare. So here is a list of 13 regional food icons that you cannot buy outside of the empire State.

I will add this asterisk. You certainly can buy some of these items online, like the Saratoga Peppermint Pigs. Perhaps the Stix and Sauce item is known by another name somewhere in the country. Salt potatoes may have gravitated elsewhere but if so nobody knows where they started. And Grandma Brown. Well, you can buy that sweet lady's baked beans on eBay. But for the most part you would have to walk into a store or restaurant in Upstate New York to enjoy these "regional" fan favorite foods.

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