West Point restaurants coming together to cook Thanksgiving meals

Published 10:35 am Tuesday, November 14, 2023

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West Point businesses and Mayor Steve Tramell are continuing the tradition of passing out Thanksgiving meals this year. Around 200 meals will be passed out on Martin Luther King Dr and 10th St from 10:30 a.m. to noon on the day of Thanksgiving.

The event started eight years ago when Tramell noticed local churches were not doing as many food handouts during the holiday. With the relationships he formed during his time as a restaurant owner of American SmokeHouse (ASH), he enlisted the help of other downtown restaurants. The meals have been a tradition ever since.

Tramell remains heavily involved in organizing the event he began almost a decade ago and will be in attendance, although he now shares the responsibility with other West Point restaurants. 

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Ben Hamilton, owner of West Point’s Johnny’s Pizza, is now in charge of coordinating the restaurants. This year the staff at Johnny’s, Pokey’s, Coach’s Bar & Grill, SIP Cafe and Wine Room, Roger’s Pit-Cooked Bar-B-Que, and Chick Delite will be helping cook the 200 meals. 

Those wanting a Thanksgiving meal can simply walk up to the large tent donated by Jackson Heating and Air. A volunteer, maybe even the mayor himself, will hand you a plate of restaurant-quality food. 

Hamilton said they often go through all 200 boxes they assemble. If there are boxes are unclaimed, volunteers or church groups will take them to the open businesses, so people who have to work on Thanksgiving get a home-cooked meal. 

“The community supports us, and it’s a way to give back to the community. Without customers coming in and supporting us, we would not be able to do that,” Hamilton said.