Election Day Dinner proceeds

Trinity Lutheran Pastor Eric Ash (right) and Shelly Dunne (second from right), who headed up the church’s annual Election Day Dinner, found a novel way to donate proceeds to (from left) Jennifer Morgan-Burt of the ACCORD domestic violence program and Mandi Joyce-Phelps of the United Way of Allegany County.

WELLSVILLE — Concerns over COVID-19 didn’t stop members of Trinity Lutheran Church from sharing the bounty from their Election Day Dinner.

Members of the congregation worked hard and came up with a novel way to carry on business as usual on Election Day. While people across the village were headed for the polls, at the church, volunteers were getting ready to dish up over 200 dinners for drive-through.

That successful event allowed the church to raise enough money to give part of it away, which happened this past week when contributions were made to the United Way and ACCORD.

Having fun with COVID-19 social distancing recommendations, Pastor Eric Ash and Shelley Dunne who headed up the dinner presented checks valued at $1,000 each to both organizations.

The remainder of the funds raised will be used by the church for its new furnace.

These contributions were made possible through the efforts of our many volunteers and the support we received from the community. Many, many thanks to everyone, and we hope that the positive effects of these contributions will be far-reaching”, Dunne said during the presentation.

For over 100 years the Trinity Lutheran Church congregation has hosted a sauerkraut dinner. Starting in late September volunteers spend one day chopping, shredding, salting, and packing more than 1700 pounds of cabbage (hundreds of heads) into large stoneware crocks set aside in the church basement to ferment for several weeks. In the past members of the congregation donated cabbage from their own gardens. As the popularity of the event grew so did the need for additional cabbage. For the last several years, church members have driven to cabbage country near Penn Yan in a pickup truck to purchase hundreds of heads of cabbage.

It has been only since the 1950s that the dinner has been held on Election Day. Around 1910, the women of the Concordia Ladies Aid Society from the Lutheran church began hosting an annual dinner in the Fall to raise funds for the church and local charities.

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