Millsap community gathers for renewed turkey dinner

Millsap Neighborhood Home and Garden Club member Juanita Bratton, right, serves food at Sunday’s turkey dinner at Millsap High School. 

MILLSAP – After a few years without it, the Millsap Community Turkey Dinner has returned.

The Millsap Neighborhood Home and Garden Club and the Millsap Masonic Lodge hosted a turkey dinner for residents on Sunday in the Millsap High School cafeteria. Donations collected during the event will go toward scholarships for MHS students.

Millsap Neighborhood Home and Garden Club Vice President Dianna French estimated that about 250 people attended the event which garnered $3,700 in donations. However, expenses to host the event have not been deducted from that total.

French said they had hoped to bring in more people but said the number of attendees is good considering this is the event’s first year back. She expects more to participate next year.

“Everybody was so excited about it, raved on the food, that next year it will be a much bigger success than this year,” French said.

After covering expenses, the money raised is planned to be split between the two groups, both of which will use it for high school scholarships. Last year, the Millsap Neighborhood Home and Garden Club gave $1,000 scholarships to 10 seniors each, French said.

Millsap Masonic Lodge Treasurer Josh Nelms said the masons give out two to four scholarships for $1,000 each.

Part of a Masonic lodge’s mission is about giving back to the community, Nelms said.

“When we can, obviously, we give out scholarships to local high schools and stuff like that to further chances of advancement for kids to excel in life,” Nelms said.

The local fire department used to host the turkey dinner but stopped a few years ago, French said. The community wanted the event to return, so the Millsap Neighborhood Home and Garden Club and the Millsap Masonic Lodge partnered to bring it back. Moving forward, the event is planned to occur annually.

Members of the Millsap Neighborhood Home and Garden Club spent three weeks making and freezing cornbread, French said. More recently, they sauteed onions and celery for the dressing and made sweet potatoes to prepare for the event.

French said the turkey dinner helps keep the community together.

“Brock and Peaster are growing so fast; Millsap still has that small community atmosphere,” French said. “Not that they’re not close in those towns, but it’s still got that small-town feeling. You know most people.”

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