SWEET HOME, Ore— For the fourth year in a row, The Point Restaurant served a free Thanksgiving feast to residents on Thanksgiving.
Michael Hall and his wife, Mira, bought the business in 2009. Since 2010, they have continued what has become a community tradition.
The first year they gave out around 100 free dinners. This year, Hall estimates over 500 guests left satisfied.
While the meal is free, customers are encouraged to donate canned goods and money, which is then pass along to the Sweet Home Emergency Ministries.
“We do it to give back. But the real story is the volunteers,” Hall says.
Everyone involved in the operation, from the chef to the wait staff to the dishwasher are volunteers.
Paul Friend, a relative of the Halls, joined the effort this year for the first time.
“This year, we wanted to spend Thanksgiving with Mike and his family. This is what they do every year, so we’re here helping out,” Friend said.
Twenty-two 20-pound turkeys are donated, and a local grocery store gives the restaurant a discount on food for the holiday feast.
Bill Wilson, a widower, enjoyed his turkey dinner at The Point this year. He says with family away, and a traditional meal being so expensive, he is thankful for the offering.
“If it weren’t for Mike, I’d be home probably having a grilled cheese sandwich,” Wilson says.