By John Lynds
When Rep. Adrian Madaro was elected to office three years ago, there was a holiday tradition started by his predecessor, Carlo Basile, that he vowed to continue.
Madaro will again host East Boston’s annual Thanksgiving Day charitable dinner that has made the holiday a little more cheerful for hundreds of low-income, homeless and elderly residents in the neighborhood.
Madaro and a group of friends, family and an army of volunteers from across the neighborhood will provide a full Thanksgiving meal for residents at the Sacred Heart Church hall that may otherwise go hungry on on Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, Nov. 23, beginning at 10:30 a.m.
“Year after year the event has grown and helps more than 400 of people in our neighborhood enjoy Thanksgiving,” said Madaro. “Being an elected official is about helping people and that becomes more of priority when you realize some people do not have the necessary means to enjoy a proper Thanksgiving or Christmas. So in the spirit of the season of giving I’m proud to keep this important East Boston tradition this year and as long as I’m state representative.”
Like years past, the food will be prepared by Spinelli’s chefs and will include salad, a full turkey dinner with all the trimmings and dessert and coffee.
Madaro said the event puts a lot of things we take for granted in life into perspective.
“When you see children of parents with a smile on their face inside the church hall you know the group of volunteers have done something right,” said Madaro. “I started to come to this event, first as Basile’s chief of staff, and now as the event’s host. It is really something I look forward to every year and has become as much a part of my family and my Thanksgiving as turkey and stuffing.”
Earlier this month Madaro was honored by the Greater Boston Food Bank (GBFB) as one of two state legislators named the Food Bank’s Public Advocate of the Year award.
Like his annual Thanksgiving Day event, Madaro said one of the main issues he continues to work on everyday is food insecurity for hundreds of residents. Madaro has been a champion of programs that have helped curb hunger in his district like Eastie-based Project Bread, the East Boston Community Soup Kitchen, the East Boston Neighborhood Health Center and the Greater Boston Food Bank (GBFB) as well as his annual Thanksgiving Day dinner.