The Kelseys Angels are back 0
SEAN CHASE Volunteers and staff at Kelsey’s Restaurant in Petawawa are preparing for the seventh annual Christmas Angels Luncheon, which will be held on Tuesday, Dec. 25 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. In the photo (left to right) are Kelsey’s general manager Kim Clouthier, organizer Gloria Deane-Freeman, and Councillor Theresa Sabourin.
The spirit of Christmas will once more be celebrated at Kelsey’s Restaurant as volunteers come together to make the day extra special, especially for those who would otherwise spend the holiday alone.
For the seventh year, the Christmas Angels Luncheon will run from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 25.
The goal of the organizers is to provide a free, fabulous and festive meal along with a fun and inviting atmosphere for those who stop by. No reservations for the sit-in meal are required.
“Every year it keeps getting bigger so you know there’s a need,” said Kelsey’s general manager Kim Clouthier.
The tradition started when organizers recognized that many military families would be without a spouse over Christmas because of deployments to Afghanistan.
For those within Petawawa who have limited mobility, are suffering from illness or are shut-in, the Kelsey’s Angels will provide take-out and home delivery. Last year, 321 dinners were served including 101 take-out meals. In the short lifetime of the luncheon, organizers estimate they’ve served over 1,400 people.
The turkey and ham dinner with all the trimmings will be prepared by staff and volunteers, however, due to the large number of meals, cooking is now done over at the Petawawa Civic Centre.
With no more major deployments to Afghanistan, the dinner now attracts people from all over the community, especially seniors and those who may not have a family with which to sit down and enjoy Christmas dinner.
“It’s a time for fellowship, it’s a time for socialization,” explained Councillor Theresa Sabourin. “Folks want to come out and enjoy a nice festive atmosphere with an excellent meal.”
Some families turn to the Angels because their life situations have drastically changed. That’s where the take-out option really helps with many, said organizer Gloria Deane-Freeman.
“We have a lot of people who are ordering because there’s a family member who’s really, really sick or is on dialysis or is a cancer patient,” said Deane-Freeman. “So they order for their family because they can’t leave the home.”
Helping to create a warm and fuzzy atmosphere is Santa Claus, who is dropping by on his way back to the North Pole. Petawawa’s Madill family will be providing the musical entertainment.
For more information, call 613-687-0841. Those seeking take-out can arrange for delivery by calling before Dec. 25, however, organizers will take orders on Christmas morning.
Sean Chase is a Daily Observer multimedia journalist