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Azure Cafe to prepare free Thanksgiving meal at Freeport Community Services

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Azure Cafe to prepare free Thanksgiving meal at Freeport Community Services

FREEPORT — For the sixth year, Azure Cafe will partner with Freeport Community Services to host a free Thanksgiving meal for residents who can't afford the costs of preparing their own or simply want to share a meal with others.

Azure Cafe's executive chef, Chris Bassett, has helped create the meal since each year. He said owner Jonas Werner used to host the meal at the restaurant, but moved it to the Community Services conference room because it has grown each year.

"This function is great for the community," Bassett said."Not only does it serve those with financial restrictions, it provides a place for people to gather whose families may have moved away. It is an opportunity for the community to share a meal."

In addition to preparing the traditional Thanksgiving feast of turkey, ham, stuffing, mashed potatoes, green beans, sweet potatoes and glazed carrots all from scratch, Bassett said there will be meals delivered to some households in the area, too.

Sue Mack, family services coordinator at FCS, said it is a special treat to have a restaurant of such quality prepare a meal for the community.

And the holiday meal is not just for the Freeport and Pownal community, Mack said. Any resident in the surrounding area is invited to attend.

"This is for people who want to get out of their homes for the afternoon, for people whose children have grown with families of their own, or for those who are looking for a group to share the holiday with," she said.

Mack said about 75 people are expected to come to the event and 15 meals will be delivered. She said she is still taking reservations, and volunteers will pick people up if they want to join the Thanksgiving meal.

"We are all about food and community building," Mack said. "The food is delicious and it can't be beat. Jonas loves cooking for large groups of people and he's so good at it."

In keeping with the giving season, Bassett said Performance Food Group North Center Food Services, Bow Street Market and Native Maine produce and specialty foods have donated the food and supplies necessary to make the dinner possible.

"The food industry has been very generous," Bassett said. "The whole event will be a lot of fun."

The Azure Cafe Thanksgiving meal will take place from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the banquet room at Freeport Community Services at 53 Depot St. There is no charge for the meal, but diners are asked to call Mack at 869-1005 to make reservations.

Amy Anderson can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 110or aanderson@theforecaster.net