Thanksgiving feast preparations underway, how to get free meals

Now to a Richmond tradition of making sure people in need -- have a Thanksgiving meal.
Published: Nov. 22, 2022 at 7:01 PM EST|Updated: Nov. 23, 2022 at 6:17 AM EST
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - The Giving Heart Community Thanksgiving Feast is right around the corner. A beloved tradition that provides meals for thousands in need is back for its 18th year.

“We’re just doing what basic humanity asks us to do,” Volunteer Bryan Distin said. “It’s community-minded. It’s being a good human being.”

The Giving Heart looks forward to this day each year. The non-profit organization provides food, fellowship and essential items to those in need. The Thanksgiving meals they provide are completely free.

The event will be held at the Greater Richmond Convention Center on Thanksgiving day between 11 a.m., and 2 p.m. Guests can pick up their meals to-go during those hours. Curbside pick-up will be available from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m.

Volunteer Bryan Distin says he is helping to ensure those in need don’t feel so alone this year.

“They feel like people actually care about them and ensure that they are fed,” he said.

Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney also came to lend a hand to volunteers today.

“People that see this see our operation here. They should be encouraged to get up and do something, help out other people or volunteer. Everyone’s busy, but you gotta make time to help out other people,” Distin said. “I think it’s important to use your time for that.”

The Richmond Convention Center isn’t the only spot folks can get a Thanksgiving meal.

Brian Fisher with Another Round Bar and Grill on Brook Road says he is opening his doors from noon to 4 p.m. for anyone to come, free of charge.

“You walk in, and you just say, ‘Hello, I’m human, and I’m gonna eat, and you come in, and we’ll have a whole buffet set up,” he said.

He says it goes beyond just food. It’s all about human connection.

“There’s so much tension, and why can’t we all just step up and come together and talk to each other and get together and speak to each other?” Fisher said. “If we speak to each other, you’ll notice that we’re all the same and nothing’s different, and we can just break bread together.”

Several other spots in the Greater Richmond Area are offering free and reduced-price meals to those in need. If you are in need of a meal, feel free to contact FeedMore at (804) 521-2500.

Diversity Thrift also offers a Thanksgiving celebration meal from 12:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day at 1407 Sherwood Ave.