The Star-Herald

Elks serve holiday dinner to hundreds

PRESQUE ISLE, Maine — On Christmas Day, the Presque Isle Elks Lodge 1954 hosted its annual family Christmas dinner for anyone who would otherwise be celebrating the holiday alone. 

Dana Dickinson, chairman of the annual event, stated, “It was truly a Christmas blessing to have been able to help so many people in a meaningful way this Christmas. Elks care and Elks share.” 

Dinner began with the Northeastland Hotel’s renowned tomato bisque soup. A choice of country baked ham or roast turkey and gravy was offered along with Aroostook mashed potatoes, baked squash and a vegetable medley. Dinner rolls and a selection of pies from Governor’s rounded out the meal.  

Everyone attending the sit-down dinner lodge was entertained by the local band “Soggybottom Boyz,” comprised of Wendell Hudson, Dale Hudson, James “Sheldon” Wright, Leland Clark and Agis Clark. 

Prior to departing, everyone received a Christmas stocking stuffed with assorted goodies. 

In addition to serving dinner at the lodge, the Elks delivered more than 200 meals to individuals requesting delivered meals, Presque Isle Public Safety workers, residents of the Sister Mary O’Donnell Homeless Shelter, and residents at Mapletree Estates, who had been without electrical power for nearly two days. 

A group of more than 30 volunteers gave up several hours of their Christmas Day in order to cook, serve and clean up after the noontime meal, as well as to transport guests and to deliver meals outside the Lodge. 

Ten members of the family of the late Cassidy Charette again volunteered at the meal as part of the work of the Shine on Cass Foundation in memory of Charette, who died at the age of 17 in a tragic hayride accident. They included Mark Wilcox, Sharon Parent, Alley Wilcox, Karson Wilcox, David Bernier, Ryan Bernier, Angela Bernier, and Randy Charette, Monica Charette and Colby Charette, parents and brother of Cassidy.

The family of Cassidy and the Shine on Cass Foundation, through their example, seek to inspire others and promote the importance of volunteerism in tribute to Cassidy, whose passion was volunteering. 

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