Dinner distribution in Irvington helps many residents ahead of Thanksgiving

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

IRVINGTON, NJ — In preparation for Thanksgiving, the Irvington Housing Authority together with Irvington Mayor Tony Vauss and the Irvington Town Council held a Thanksgiving dinner distribution at the housing authority at 624 Nye Ave. on Nov. 23. 

“Every year with the exception of the last year, the administration of the Irvington Housing Authority shows their appreciation to all the residents by serving them dinner,” Council President Renee Burgess told the Irvington Herald on Nov. 25. “This year, the interim director, Ramon Rivera; the commissioners; and the staff were determined to make it happen, because COVID prevented us from having this event last year.”

According to Burgess, the dinner distribution and another separate food distribution held the same day were both successful and saw a large turnout this year. According to Burgess, food was also delivered straight to the doors of those who are homebound.

“On Tuesday, there were about 200 people that were served,” Burgess said. “The meal included turkey, chicken, macaroni and cheese, string beans, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce, cornbread and, of course, gravy, along with delicious pie.

“The presentation and setup of the food was nice and professional,” she continued. “The aroma of the food sparked the warmth and love that you would feel inside when you come together with loved ones, along with positive vibes and energy during this holiday season. Everyone that participated left with a smile.”

A couple of vendors donated the condiments, while the dinners were purchased by the IHA from Don’s Diner on Nye Avenue in Irvington.

“Later that afternoon, the mayor and council gave away over 300 bags filled with one week’s worth of food and beverages,” Burgess said. “As the residents exited with their bags of food, they were given fresh turkeys to help complement their holiday festivities. Both events were highly successful and well attended.”

Burgess said she is grateful for the town’s ability to help residents during the holiday season.

“It’s a great feeling to be able to serve others at this time of the year. There are a lot of struggles and mixed emotions that are experienced this time of year,” Burgess said. “People, including myself, have lost both parents, grandparents, etc., and, when holidays come upon us, it can be very challenging. Memories can fill your heart with grief, loneliness and happiness all at the same time — it all can be very challenging. It doesn’t matter if you’re on the receiving end or the giving end, being able to be around someone or a group of people helps with the void that is in your heart when you are missing a loved one.

“It is also a blessing to be able to show appreciation for your loved ones that are still with us,” she continued. “To me, this is a time to reset yourselves. It’s a time to release past hurts, disappointments and negative energies. This time of the year, be thankful for yet another day to be great. On behalf of Mayor Tony Vauss and the entire council, we want to send great wishes of peace, love and prosperity to all of Irvington.”

Photos Courtesy of Renee Burgess and Tony Vauss