Marysville Community Food Bank volunteer Al Elliott puts a turkey into a cart which volunteer Cita Grey is preparing during one of the food bank’s Thanksgiving dinner distribution days on Nov. 22.


Families in need received turkeys and other Thanksgiving staples as part of the Marysville Community Food Bank’s holiday distribution this year.

Every year the food bank provides turkeys to their clients during late November.

“It’s going well,” said Dell Deierling, director of the Marysville Community Food Bank.

“We’ve got the foods we need in place to feed the people and a team of volunteers here to serve,” he added.

The food bank has seen high demand since the beginning of the COVID pandemic, although in Marysville that has slowed down a bit.

“The need has settled down. We saw it starting to trend up toward the end, so we’re a little bit anxious,” said Deierling. “So far we’re on track to have the number of turkeys needed though."

The food bank served more than 100 turkeys on many of its distribution days, including 174 on Nov. 19.

The organization has provided the dinners for several years now.

“I can remember making the pledge we were going to give everyone a turkey,” said Deierling.

“We remember when people heard they were going to get a turkey how happy they were and how much it meant to them,” he said.

After that the food bank officials hoped to provide the turkeys every year, which they have.

“It was obvious once that happened that we had to make it happen every year,” said Deierling.

Volunteers at the food bank said they also enjoyed the experience.

“I’ve been volunteering for over 20 years,” said volunteer Al Elliott. “I just like to help people. It’s fun to see everyone that comes through, especially during the holidays."

Volunteer Cita Grey also helps at the food bank year round.

“It’s just a good feeling and the people here are wonderful,” she said.

Throughout the pandemic volunteers and food bank clients have had to adjust as the drive-thru model has become the norm for food distribution.

Previously, clients walked into the facility and personally picked the items they wanted.

“Due to the pandemic we’re still using a drive-thru model and interestingly a good portion of the people actually prefer it,” said Deierling.

The model does provide convenience and reduced time in lines.

“We’re trying to also add some customization into the process, which is tough during the holidays when we’re serving so many people,” said Deierling. “But during other times we are adding customization to give you the flexibility of not taking things. There’s some empowerment there."

The food bank also provides Christmas Food Basket distributions on Dec. 17, 20 and 21.

“We’ll be ramping up for Christmas soon and looking for hams,” said Deierling.

He wanted to thank the Marysville community which continues to provide support for the food bank.

“This doesn’t happen without a giving community, and this community has continued to support their local families that have a need,” said Deierling.


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