By Mike Kinney
The 5th Annual Thanksgiving Turkey Giveaway at Phila Burger Station in Richmond distributed over 300 turkeys with all the fixings to families in need on Sunday while enlivening the neighborhood with live music and free haircuts.
“Every year it just gets bigger and better,” said organizer Alex Valencia.
Five years ago, Valencia, a local businessman, approached Phila Burger Station owner Sam Lee about holding the charitable giveaway in the restaurant parking lot.
Over the years, the event has grown to include support from numerous community organizations, including Richmond Firefighters Local 188, La Diffrencia Car Club, Richmond Wholesale, Richmond Tire, Living Hope Neighborhood Church, Lalos Asados, Kiwanis Club, Brown Berets and other companies and non-profits.
“It’s like one big family reunion,” Valencia said. “We are so happy that we can serve the community each year and provide Thanksgiving meals.”
Lupita Gomez, a recipient of a Thanksgiving meal, said the event’s growth is timely, as “many families are going through such hard times.”
“I am so grateful to be here and will be able to provide my family with a hot Thanksgiving meal,” she said.