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The effort involves volunteers of all ages, with the youngest scooping up cranberry sauce.
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All Saints Volunteers Make Sure Seniors Have Thanksgiving Meal

By Tammy DanielsiBerkshires Staff
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Shannon Daugherty gives instructions for putting pies and rolls into paper bags for Thursday's delivery. 
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The parish hall at All Saints Episcopal Church was abuzz with the activity of more than two dozen volunteers of all ages on Wednesday evening.
 
All the potato peeling, pie packaging and cranberry sauce portioning was in preparation to ensure nearly 200 local seniors would have a Thanksgiving feast this Thursday.
 
"Over 35 years, you just figure out a way to make it happen," coordinator Shannon Daugherty said, snapping her fingers. "We've got this down to a science."
 
The annual event is hosted by the church and plenty of parishioners volunteeer, but many of them are also related so it's become something of a family affair. 
 
Daugherty's mother, Diane Bleau, spearheaded the effort and she has worked her way up through the ranks in a way, starting at the kids' table scooping out cranberry sauce into plastic cups. 
 
"There's a lot of family here," she said, pointing to cousins, in-laws and children, and her sister in the office. "Our kids are all here ... we've got family and friends."
 
The tasks on Wednesday included peeling nearly 100 pounds of potatoes, slicing up some 30 pumpkin pies, bagging the pie slices and rolls to go with each meal. The turkeys and mashed potatoes are cooked on Thanksgiving morning along with stuffing, and peas and carrots that are then served assembly line style for delivery. The food is provided through donations and the Northern Berkshire United Way.
 
"My cousin and I will be down here about 5:30 tomorrow morning putting turkeys in the oven and ready, and then everybody else will show up around 11," Daugherty said.
 
The effort involves a host of volunteers who show up on Thanksgiving morning to sweep away the pre-served, homemade meals to people who have registered for a visit.
 
While their prepping to feed those with nowhere, they've made their own arrangements for family get-together once it's all over and done.
 
Daugherty said the numbers have dipped a little bit, and she thinks that's because the baby boomers has "popped." But they're prepared for any last-minute calls on Thursday morning. 
 
"One year I think we had a homeless man was out front and we invited him in," she said. "It's not our main population, you know, but if someone's out there we can help, we will. ...
 
"The Police Department, the Fire Department, we call them too and send them meals if we have any."
 
Her cousin, Syid Uqdah, said if they have any leftovers, they have figure out what to do with them so it makes sense to offer them to people working on Thanksgiving. 
 
"Whoever's in need, we're here to feed them," he said.

Tags: holiday story,   thanksgiving,   

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Clarksburg Town Meeting to Decide CPA Adoption, Spending Articles

CLARKSBURG, Mass. — Voters will decide spending items and if the town should adopt the Community Preservation Act at Wednesday's town meeting. 
 
Voters will also decide whether to extend the terms for town moderator and tree warden from one year to three years.
 
The annual town meeting will take place at 6 p.m. in the gym at Clarksburg School. The warrant can be found here.
 
The town operating budget is $1,767,759, down $113,995 largely because of debt falling off. Major increases include insurance, utilities and supplies; the addition of a full-time laborer in the Department of Public Works and an additional eight hours a week for the accountant.
 
The school budget is at $2,967,609, up $129,192 or 4 percent over this year. Town officials had urged the school to cut back more but in a joint meeting last week agreed to dip into free cash to keep the prekindergarten for 4-year-olds free. 
 
Clarksburg's assessment to the Northern Berkshire Vocational School District is $363,220; the figure is based on the percentage of students enrolled at McCann Technical School. 
 
There are a number of spending articles for the $571,000 in free cash the town had certified earlier this year. The high number is over several years because the town had fallen behind on filings with the state. 
 
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