Fort Smith Salvation Army Welcomes Everyone For Thanksgiving Meal

FORT SMITH (KFSM)- The Salvation Army in Fort Smith greeted anyone and everyone on Thursday (Nov. 24) for a Thanksgiving meal.

"It's great," Corey Baldwin said. "All these people here, they need help and they need food. This is a great place to go for anybody in need."

Baldwin said he was most excited about the friends he was spending Thanksgiving with, but he was looking forward to the pecan pie too.

"I came to eat some really good food," Baldwin said. "They've been preparing back there for two days now, so I'm going to eat all I can."

Dozens of volunteers offered a helping hand, including several families who volunteered together.

"It's just a way of giving back," volunteer Stephanie Gibson said. "It's a way of getting out there and letting them know people in the community are here. We care about them, we love them, and we want to help them in any way we can."

Colorado State University student Jake Ingram is home for the holidays and said his family makes volunteering at the Salvation Army a yearly tradition.

"It's just a whole family affair," Ingram said. "We do it every year, and it's good to give back to the community and help those in need."

Guests were treated to everything from turkey and dressing, to green beans and pie.

"A program like this gives them a meal they may not even have," Ingram said. "It alleviated hunger and it provides a welcoming and loving community for people to enjoy their Thanksgiving meal."

Fort Smith Salvation Army Commanding Officer Major Johnny Poff said regardless of status, everyone is welcome.

"No one her wants anyone to feel less," Maj. Poff said. "We want them to feel welcome because we want them to know they're the reason we're here. This is why we're doing it because we want to feel the joy of sharing with one another."

The Salvation Army served nearly 300 meals for lunch and delivered more than 200 meals around town.