BOSTON (CBS) – In this season of giving it was a day for hundreds of people to give thanks, and then roll up their sleeves. Whether it was serving a Thanksgiving dinner or preparing fundraising pies, volunteers were out in force helping those less fortunate.
Sports took a back seat at the Boston Garden. Instead of the Celtics parquet or Bruins ice, tables and chairs were set so hundreds of people could enjoy a Thanksgiving dinner with all the trimmings, something many of them wouldn’t have if not for the efforts of the “Table of Friends,” a project that has been going on for 20 years through TD Garden’s philanthropic arm, Garden Neighborhood Charities.
“It’s marvelous how everybody is coming together. Nobody is arguing. It’s like one big family,” says one woman who came for a meal and companionship.
Dozens of people gave their time including Boston Police Commissioner William Evans, Bruins great Cam Neely and Boston Mayor Marty Walsh. “It makes you appreciate what you have in life, and it also lets you know there’s a tremendous need out there,” Walsh says.
“Just for everybody to come together and thank God that we lived to see another Thanksgiving,” says another woman who has had Thanksgiving dinner at the Garden for several years.
Pie in The Sky was the name of the game across town at the Convention Center. Volunteers hauled pies, packed pies and stacked pies, 20,000 pies, all for an important fundraising effort for Community Servings, an organization that delivers meals to people too sick to cook their own.
“We call Community Servings Pie in the Sky the world’s greatest bake sale,” says the organization’s CEO David Waters. Each pie earns a $30 contribution. “We will raise three quarters of a million dollars selling pies,” Waters says.
Matt Kurkowski has volunteered for this effort for seven years. “When you sit down on Thanksgiving, it’s all done and all the pies have gone out and all the money has been raised, it’s that sense of satisfaction I don’t think I get from anything else in the course of the year,” he says.