Albany police to serve early Thanksgiving meal to community

The 3rd annual holiday event on Tuesday is open to anyone regardless of income level

ALBANY — The family protection unit of the Albany Police Department is gearing up for its 3rd annual Thanksgiving dinner on Tuesday, police officials say, and expect it will surpass all records.

APD Detective Bryant Leverett said the event will “at least double” in size from last year’s feast. Unlike some other local organizations, the APD will provide Tuesday’s meal free to anyone who wants to come, regardless of economic standing.

“Some groups provide dinners for the less fortunate,” Leverett said. “That’s not our mission. Whether you’re a doctor or a lawyer, or whatever your profession, you can drop by and have a great hot meal.”

Leverett said the original intent for the dinner event was simply for area law enforcement to have a day of fellowship with members of the community and to bolster relations. According to Leverett, the get-togethers have grown quickly through the years. The APD is preparing to serve 1,000 dinners at the Albany Civic Center.

“The serving starts at 5 p.m.” Leverett said, “and we’ll serve until the food is gone.”

About 20 area organizations donated food or funds to the event, Leverett said, with a lot of it coming from one source in particular — Gabriel Martin and the Kingdom of God Ministries in Arlington.

“She’s been behind the event since day one,” Leverett said.