McClellan Center readies for Thanksgiving feast

VISTA — In Vista, seniors are welcomed to attend a holiday feast on Nov. 22 — a longstanding Thanksgiving tradition at the Gloria McClellan Center.

Before the buffet, The Blue Pharaohs will provide musical entertainment for an hour. Gloria McClellan Center Program Manager Donna Meester said this group was brought back by popular demand. At noon, the music will stop, and the Thanksgiving feast will begin overflowing with turkey, mashed sweet potatoes, green beans, cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie.

“Many of our seniors that regularly attend and nonregulars for the meal program don’t have a lot of families around. So, they’re not making a big dinner, and they’re not getting the traditional Thanksgiving feast,” Meester said. “Coming here affords them the opportunity to have that Thanksgiving meal and spend time with kind of their new family they have made here.”

Meester said many of the seniors who frequent their center have become much like their extended family. The center provides everyone with social opportunities, entertainment and meals.   

On a personal level, Meester said new seniors who visit the center for the very first time feel so welcomed they become regulars in no time at all.

“Some have tears in their eyes because they’re just so excited they found this place and how everybody treated them so great,” she said. “Without this place, seniors tell us they don’t know what they’d do.”

For many, the Gloria McLellan Center is their second home. They are there Monday through Friday enjoying their friends and complimentary lunches.

“It makes us happy to know that our whole goal is helping seniors by giving them a place they can come to while they can still stay in their homes where they’ve grown to love, understand and feel comfortable,” she said. “Our center is an extension of that comfort we provide, and our Thanksgiving b

For information, call 760.643.5288. Reservations are required for the buffet, which begins at 11 a.m.

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