Mid-Ohio Valley churches to host Christmas dinners

Photo Provided Volunteers serve dinner during last year’s Christmas Day Dinner at First Presbyterian in Parkersburg. This year’s event will be noon to 2:30 p.m. Tuesday.

PARKERSBURG — Communal Christmas Day meals have been a tradition in the Mid-Ohio Valley for years and that practice continues this year.

* Gihon Tabernacle Evangelical Methodist Church will hold a free community Christmas breakfast from 9-11 a.m. Tuesday at the church at 1906 Gihon Road in south Parkersburg.

The breakfast of pancakes and sausage will be served in the family center located behind the church. The Christmas worship service will begin at 11 a.m.

* The First Presbyterian Church, at 1341 Juliana St. in Parkersburg, has been hosting a Christmas Day dinner in its fellowship hall annually and will be holding its 28th dinner this year.

The free dinner will be served from noon to 2:30 p.m. on Christmas Day, and will include salad, turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, green beans, roll, beverage and dessert. Doors open at 11:45 a.m. with serving beginning at noon. Meal reservations are available by calling 304-422-5426 or email office@fpcpburgwv.org.

The dinner is not just for people in need, but also gets a lot of people who are alone and don’t have anyone to share Christmas with.

Volunteers at the church began planning for the dinner in October. Much of the food has been donated by local businesses. The dinner will have 25-30 volunteers from First Presbyterian working, and those are usually joined by an equal number of volunteers from the community who stop by to help in various ways.

* Another Christmas Day dinner is planned at 1 p.m. at Coolville United Methodist Church in Coolville on Tuesday.

This will be the 11th year for the Coolville event. There is no charge. The meal will include ham, turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, green beans, macaroni and cheese, cole slaw, rolls, dessert, coffee and tea.

A group of volunteers from the church and the community will help with the event.

* In Marietta, the fifth annual Christmas Day Feast will be 1-2 p.m. Tuesday at First Presbyterian Church at the corner of Fourth and Wooster streets in Marietta.

The event is free and open to the public. Doors open at noon. Music will be provided by Puls Family String Trio. Takeout and deliveries are available by calling 740-371-4587. Those needing transportation assistance can call the same number.

A number of area churches are working together to put on the event, spokesman Bruce Haas said. Volunteers are always needed and can contact Haas at 740-629-1277, he said.

“We’re still looking for everyone from drivers to food preparers,” Haas said, adding any help is appreciated.

Any leftover food and monetary donations are taken to the Gospel Mission Food Pantry in Marietta, he said.

* In south Parkersburg, Tri-City Baptist Church will host its annual Community Christmas Day Dinner from noon to 2 p.m. Tuesday at the church at 913 Grandview St., Parkersburg.

The dinner is open to everyone in the Parkersburg community. For more information, contact the church at 304-428-0767 or email tchc@cascable.net.