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updated: 11/20/2012 3:58 PM

Where to go for free holiday meal on Thursday

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Free Thanksgiving dinners aren't just about helping the homeless or needy, according to Liz Eakins, executive director of Lazarus House.

"We see our Thanksgiving dinner as a way for the community to come together and be with their neighbors," Eakins said.

Lazarus House, a charitable organization based in St. Charles, serves the homeless and those in danger of becoming homeless. It is one of several organizations serving a free Thanksgiving dinner on Thursday, and has done so yearly since it opened its doors in 1997.

"(The dinner) gets bigger every year -- we serve 300 to 400 people yearly. The numbers continue to grow," Eakins said.

At the Lazarus House dinner, which is served from noon to 2 p.m. at the Tri-City Salvation Army, 1710 S. Seventh Ave., nobody is asked their financial status. Registration is not required, but appreciated by calling (630) 587-2144.

Also serving free Thanksgiving dinners Thursday:

• The Batavia VFW Post 1197 Men's Auxiliary dinner is from noon to 3 p.m. Thursday in the Hangar, 645 S. River St. (Route 25). The event is free and open to the public. Dinner includes turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy and all the trimmings. Donations are appreciated but not required. For large groups or to arrange deliveries for shut-ins, call the Post at (630) 879-9630.

• The Batavia United Methodist Church will serve dinner from 1 to 4 p.m. at the church, 8 N. Batavia Ave. Use the church's Water Street entrance. All are welcome. If you need a ride, call (630-879-7060).

• Feed 'Em Soup is open from 2 to 5 p.m. at 122 S. First St., DeKalb. The menu includes turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, stuffing, green bean casserole, cranberry sauce and dessert. All are welcome, as are donations, but not required. For more information, call (815) 310-0903 or visit

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