Sally Kelly, matriarch of the Kelly family, which will host its 33rd annual free Thanksgiving dinner for the entire community in Bay St. Louis on Thanksgiving Day.

“Thanksgiving is the holiday of peace, the celebration of work and the simple life… a true folk-festival that speaks the poetry of the turn of the seasons, the beauty of seedtime and harvest, the ripe product of the year — and the deep, deep connection of all these things with God.”

– Ray Stannard Baker

Thanksgiving Day is coming up next Thursday, Nov. 22, but people in Hancock County will be giving thanks -- and food -- for the next several days at multiple celebrations county-wide.

Lutheran Church of the Pines, located at 309 Hwy. 90 in Waveland, has partnered with the King's Kitchen to invite the entire community to enjoy a traditional Thanksgiving lunch today, Saturday, from noon-2 p.m. Volunteers will be serving food until it's gone. Everyone is welcome.

On Sunday, the Hancock County Sheriff's Office will host a free Thanksgiving dinner for senior citizens, beginning at 10 a.m., at the Knights of Columbus Hall in Kiln.

On Thanksgiving Day, the Hancock County Senior Citizens Center, located at 601 Bookter St. in Bay St. Louis, will serve seniors beginning at 11:45 a.m.

Also on Thursday, the Kelly family will provide its 33rd annual Free Thanksgiving Dinner from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. at American Legion Post 139 Hall, 701 Green Meadow Road, Bay St. Louis.The sit-down, restaurant-style dinner is open to everyone. The dinner will include turkey and all the trimmings.

Take-out dinners are also available. Deliveries will also be made to the homebound only in Bay St. Louis, Waveland and Hancock County.

People who are homebound need to call now to reserve your meals on the list at 223-7349 or e-mail, and include your complete name, address, phone number and number of meals needed. Homebound meal reservations are due by Nov. 19. Those who would like to volunteer can call or e-mail.

Sally Kelly, the matriarch of the clan, started the tradition 33 years ago at the family's C's Restaurant, which has since closed.

We're so grateful that we can share it with all the wonderful people in the community." Nancy Bosarge -- one of the "Kelly Girls" -- said last year. "We have people come back every year. We get blessed back so much in so many ways that I think we get more benefit out of it than they do."

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