Christmas spirit spreads quickly, family to offer free meal at EaglesPublished 8:11am Thursday, December 13, 2012
Plenty of people think about doing good things but may never act. Several weeks ago, Tarsha LeBarron finally acted upon her good-natured intentions when she set up a free Christmas meal to be held Dec. 16 at the Eagles Club in Austin, 107 11th St. NE. Anyone is welcome to attend.count
“We’ve been talking about it for years,” LeBarron said. “I just decided to do it because we are a big family, and I just thought we could give back to the community for people who are less fortunate.”
LeBarron’s giving spirit infected others quickly, including her Eagles co-workers Rita Srock and Mary Graff and her parents, Craig and Peggy Nelson. Though the Nelsons live in Florida, Craig still paid for the meal, which cost about $500.
“My dad said, ‘Whatever you need, I’ll give you,’” LeBarron added.
Furthermore, the Nelsons will volunteer in the kitchen along with LeBarron and the other Eagles employees. Even LeBarron’s children will assist.
“I want them to appreciate that it’s nice to help other people and give back,” LeBarron said.
Those involved in the setup only needed to look at their own situations, like when Srock’s husband had heart surgery and she lost her job. LeBarron recalls how her husband was laid off from work, and times were tough.
“Everybody deserves that one day to have a meal and not worry about it,” LeBarron said.
She noted “less fortunate” doesn’t always have to mean what most people think, as well. LeBarron refers to people who may not have any family with whom to celebrate Christmas, or others who have lost loved ones, struggled with medical problems or suffered in other ways. Like Srock said, sometimes it’s just nice to be around a bunch of people — to feel included.
So for that reason, LeBarron will help the Eagles Club live up to its motto of “people helping people.”
Volunteers are ready to serve about 200 people with gourmet food.
“We have a fabulous menu,” Srock added.
Along with au gratin potatoes, green beans and ham, the crew has set up plenty of desserts, too, including fudge pies, homemade cookies and cheesecakes.
The free meal will run from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday. No registration is required, and attendees can simply show up.