Community eats and leaves with leftovers at annual Thanksgiving dinner

ST GEORGE — An over four-decades-long tradition of feeding the St. George community continued Thursday with as much enthusiasm and as many hungry mouths as ever before.

Guests are served at Red Rock Canyon School's annual community Thanksgiving dinner, St. George, Utah, Nov. 24, 2016 | Photo by Sheldon Demke, St. George News
Guests are served at Red Rock Canyon School’s annual community Thanksgiving dinner, St. George, Utah, Nov. 24, 2016 | Photo by Sheldon Demke, St. George News

The Red Rock Canyon School at 747 E. St. George Blvd. hosted the annual feast, now in its 44th year, for all community members in need of a Thanksgiving meal.

Hundreds of turkeys and a plethora of traditional Thanksgiving dinner items are prepared and served to thousands of hungry guests every year. The feast is open to everyone, and guests range from students away from home to families in need.

See the video on the media player top of this story.

Frank Habibian, owner of Red Rock Canyon School and other surrounding adolescent treatment facilities, started the yearly tradition in 1973 after being invited for Thanksgiving dinner as a recent immigrant to the country.

“We are very happy to be able to be here to serve other people. This Thanksgiving is all about love and giving,” Habibian said.

A volunteer enthusiastically prepares food at Red Rock Canyon School's annual community Thanksgiving dinner, St. George, Utah, Nov. 24, 2016 | Photo by Sheldon Demke, St. George News
A volunteer enthusiastically prepares food at Red Rock Canyon School’s annual community Thanksgiving dinner, St. George, Utah, Nov. 24, 2016 | Photo by Sheldon Demke, St. George News

The event is also a religious calling of sorts for Habibian who said he is following the tenets of Jesus Christ.

“Honestly, I cannot do it myself all alone.”

Every year, Habibian receives the help of dozens of enthusiastic volunteers from the Southern Utah area.

“They go out of their way to help out … without those guys, there is no way I can do it,” he said of the volunteers.

Habibian’s exuberance for the event was readily apparent as he clearly spelled out that everyone is welcome to come eat as much as they want — and to take home leftovers.

See more stories: St. George News series, “Thanksgiving 2016”

Event details

  • When: Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 24, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Where: Red Rock Canyon School, 747 E. St. George Blvd., St. George
  • Admission: Free to the public
  • Red Rock Canyon School Website | Facebook | Telephone: 435-673-6111

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Email: jwitham@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2016, all rights reserved.

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1 Comment

  • .... November 24, 2016 at 2:37 pm

    I always enjoy volunteering for community projects like this that always lend a helping hand to the less fortunate.

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