CAPE CORAL, Fla.- It's a spread more reminiscent of a fancy restaurant, than a soup kitchen: sage-butter roasted turkey, celery-onion stuffing, and of course, plenty of pumpkin pie to go around.
"We didn't buy anything pre-packaged. Nothing was frozen. Everything is fresh just like if I were preparing it for my family at home," Cafe' Pignoli Chef Janet Rinehart said Thursday.
Cafe' Pignoli is dishing out the free turkey dinner to anyone with no place to go this Thanksgiving. They're absorbing thousands of dollars of food costs, to make sure no one goes hungry this holiday.
"With these economic times, there's a lot of people out of work. There's a lot of people who've gone through foreclosure. People are just strapped financially," Cafe' Pignoli Chef and owner Robert Cardoos said.
Dinner was served on white-linen tablecloths, adorned by fresh cut flowers. For those unable to enjoy dinner at Cape Harbour, 140 volunteers were on hand to deliver dinner right to their door.
"It means a lot to me and my wife. The times have been real difficult for me, real difficult for my wife. We're grateful there are people out there who really do a lot for people," said Adam Huyer, who enjoyed the free Thanksgiving dinner.
Over 400 pounds of turkey was carved over the course of three hours, serving about 350 people. Some were volunteers, while others were needy.
But this Thanksgiving, they're all family, enjoying dinner under the same white tent.
"There's no labelling. So we don't know who a volunteer is and who a recipient is. Everybody's equal today," Cardoos said Thursday.
This is the first time Cafe' Pignoli's hosted a free Thanksgiving dinner in the Cape. Cardoos says he hopes to carry on the tradition for years to come.