Hundreds shared in the community meal at the Annual Share the Spirit Spaghetti Feed Tuesday at the Homer Elks Lodge – a Christmas affair generous with song, and placed as a time-honored Homer tradition.
Sharlene and Rick Cline, owners of the Homestead Restaurant, volunteered to organize the Spaghetti Feed, which acts as the largest fundraiser for the Share the Spirit charity program. After 17 years as volunteers, the Clines are well familiar with the annual Christmas meal. They added their own touch by insisting on hand-rolled meatballs this year, instead of ordering premade from Costco. One of the preparation highlights was a gathering this weekend of volunteers at a “meatball rolling party.” Using hamburger raised in Alaska from McNeil Canyon Meats, those who showed up Sunday to participate had their work cut out for them – 120 pounds of hamburger to shape into balls, to be exact.
Volunteers assembled to help with the giant vats of sauce it takes to provide more than 1,000 meals. Two Sisters Bakery and Fresh Sourdough Express donated breads served with each meal.
“To me what’s amazing is that most all the restaurants donated to make salads and breads. There are tons of volunteers, probably 50,” Cline said. “It’s an extraordinary number of people from an entire spectrum. It’s a real cross section – all ages and all walks of life. I think that’s what makes it really special.”
The Homer High Swing Choir (TOP) sang Christmas carols, joined by McNeil Canyon Elementary students and Fireweed Academy kids.
The Homer Chamber of Commerce also met at the Elks so that members could take advantage of the Christmas tradition.
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