DENVER (KDVR) — More Thanksgiving meals were prepared by the Salvation Army this year than in previous years, despite inflation and the pandemic.
At one time not so long ago, thousands of people would gather for a Thanksgiving meal at the Colorado Convention Center.
That has all changed. Now, they are being given their Thanksgiving meals at various shelters.
FOX31 was at the Aloft Hotel as the Salvation Army and volunteers served meals at the building, which turned into a shelter during the pandemic.
More than 5,000 people received meals on Thanksgiving Day from the Salvation Army, which teamed up with King Soopers and Miss Betty’s Cooking.
Frank Perez, who is staying at the hotel shelter, was grateful, saying he wasn’t sure if he’d have a Thanksgiving meal.
“I probably would not. I probably would be alone and buy me a hamburger or something, but this is the best thing here because you are around people. You can understand that we all have a story, we all have issues,” Perez said.
Serving so many has become more of a challenge.
The cost of a Thanksgiving dinner is up 14% this year. The price of a 16-pound turkey is up 21% compared to a year ago.
Despite the price hikes, Salvation Army said King Soopers donated all the food.
“How they solved the supply chain problems, I’m not sure. They did their magic and made sure we had the turkeys for this week,” Salvation Army Denver Metro Coordinator Richard Pease said.
More than 3,330 pounds of turkey were served on Thursday, along with 700 pumpkin pies.