(WBIR - Lenoir City) Hundreds of low-income Loudon County families will be able to have a traditional Thanksgiving celebration this year thanks to donations from across the area.
Volunteers with the Good Samaritan Center, Walmart and other area organizations handed out 800 Thanksgiving baskets on Saturday afternoon in the parking lot of the Lenoir City Walmart.
Pantry manager Eddy Schubert said families had to apply with the Good Samaritan Center in order to qualify for a basket.
"A lot of people don't have the money to feed their families during the year, much less a special meal at Thanksgiving. So if we can provide a meal to 800 families it makes us all feel good because we know we're all doing a good thing for the community," Shubert said.
Each basket included a turkey, stuffing, green beans, corn, cranberry sauce, rolls and a dessert.
The holiday Thanksgiving tradition has grown significantly over the years.
Shubert said when they first started it in 1999, they were only able to give out 30 baskets. They also had to substitute large chickens in place of turkeys.