Thanksgiving Dinner

Thanksgiving Dinner

THURS NOV 22 ♦ The Annual Roser Community Thanksgiving Dinner – 2:00 PM in the Fellowship Hall. Volunteers are needed – register below!

This meal is a celebration of all our blessings… for anyone who needs a place to share a meal in the presence of family and friends. From patrons of the Roser Food Pantry to millionaire Anna Maria Island residents, from families vacationing on the island to lonely widows and widowers, everyone is welcome! There is no charge for the delicious traditional Thanksgiving meal with all the fixings. The tables are festive with linen clothes, silver and china.

Preparation for this feast begins in the summer. A chairperson is put in place and a committee is formed to cover purchasing, decoration, volunteers, publicity, etc. People volunteer to roast 13 turkeys, bake 10 apple pies, 10 pumpkin pies, 10 pecan pies, and bring them by 10:00 AM Thanksgiving Day to the Roser kitchen. Volunteers will prepare the stuffing, potatoes and gravy, sweet potatoes, cranberries the day before and the morning of the feast. There are set chores for a host of volunteers (a total of 75) to work in the kitchen, set the tables, serve and to clean up afterwards. The orchestration of this event has been carefully documented and perfected in a manual that has been passed down to new chairs of the committee over the years.

Reservations are requested by the Sunday prior the Thanksgiving. Due to the limited seating—we can seat 200—we ask that folks cancel their reservation if they find they will not be attending.

The guests are greeted at the door and seated at the tables. The card on the table reads:

“This meal is a gift to you from members and friends of Roser Memorial Community Church.

Many hands have prepared the food with love and gratitude to God for all the blessings we enjoy. Because some have told us they would like an opportunity to make a donation, a freewill offering bucket has been placed near the exit. Please do not feel obligated to donate. Jesus demonstrated the gracious hospitality of God, which we are privileged to extend to you in His Name.”

For many volunteers working and sharing a meal with our community is a family tradition. Others volunteer, but still have their family Thanksgiving at home!

Everyone is invited to join in a SERVICE OF THANKSGIVING at 10:00 AM in the historic Roser Memorial Chapel. In the stillness of the centennial Chapel, one can sometimes sense the continuing presence of the small group of early Anna Maria Island pioneers who came together to worship and to study the words and ways of the Christian faith. Don’t miss this unique opportunity to worship in this historical Anna Maria Chapel. READ MORE


If you have volunteered to roast a turkey, please see the turkey roasting suggestions below. It is helpful if carved but not necessary. If you volunteered to bring a pie, please bring it to the church kitchen by 10:00 AM. Call 941-778-0414 if you have questions.

Purchase an approximately 12 lb. turkey (if you wish reimbursement submit voucher with receipt to church office). Allow 3 to 3 1/2 hours to roast, on Thanksgiving Day. Bring turkey and drippings to church between 12:00 & 1:00 pm.

Roast Turkey:
1. Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees.
2. Remove giblets & neck from inside turkey. Rinse bird with running cold water, drain well.
3. Place turkey, breast up, on rack in open roasting pan, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Do not cover.
4. When bird has browned as much as you wish, place over the breast, tent-fashion, a piece of heavy duty aluminum foil.
5. Roast until done.

Testing for Doneness:
One of two ways
1. Thermometer – insert in thickest part of meat, between breast and thigh, being careful tip doesn’t touch bone, until it reads 185 degrees.
2. Hand method – leg should move easily when gently moved up and down.
Happy Thanksgiving!