Preparations are underway for a Salina tradition, the Bill Fekas Family Christmas Dinner.
Chef Bill Fekas had a dream 30-years ago to prepare and serve a free dinner for anyone who was alone on Christmas Day, “I wanted the idea so bad, just like when you want to buy a new car,” he said.
Fekas tells KSAL News that Salina businessman Dean Evans told him to get the ball rolling and he would pay the bill, “Dean said go ahead and then I said …now what did I get into?”
Fekas, with the help of a small army of volunteers, has been preparing a turkey dinner with all the trimmings for three decades now for a gathering that has grown from serving about 30 people the first year to over 4,300 in 2012.
Fekas points to his helpers as the key to getting things ready to eat on Christmas Day, and applauds those who help buy the groceries. “Right now we need some donations to pay the bills.”
Fekas explained how the food must be ordered and paid for in advance so the items can arrive in time for preparations. “I would appreciated it very much if anybody would help us pay the bills, that is the main thing.”
The Bill Fekas Family Christmas Dinner is at the 4-H Building in Salina on Christmas Day. Donations are needed to make sure the dinner stays a tradition here in Salina.
Those who want to send a check can mail it to : Bill Fekas Family Christmas Dinner – PO Box 2173 – Salina Kansas 67401. Bill Fekas can be reached at 785 827 6262.