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Residents give thanks, while supporting F.I.S.H.

By Staff | Nov 18, 2015

F.I.S.H. volunteers for the Thanksgiving Celebration dinner Nov. 22 at the Sanibel Community House includes (L to R) David Dolly, Kelly Koerpel, Marletta Short, Don Short, Bz Coyne, Sandra Feather, Mary Bondurant & Fred Bondurant. BRIAN WIERIMA

Thanksgiving brings a time of consolidation to families and communities alike and Sanibel is no different.

Having Thanksgiving in paradise helps bring out the joy amongst the Sanibel residents during the annual Thanksgiving Celebration, which will be Nov. 22, at the Community House starting at 6:45 p.m.

Once again, the proceeds from the Thanksgiving celebration will benefit Friends in Service Here (F.I.S.H.) on Sanibel, which has been the constant since 2009.

“We picked FISH because it’s about keeping it in the community,” said Mary Bondurant, who along with her mother Marj Nordstrom, organizes the event.

Volunteers during the dinner dress as Pilgrims and will collect donations for FISH.

The event is more than 20 years old and had always been held on Thanksgiving Eve. But that changed several years ago because of a decline in attendance.

That’s when Jean Wood had the idea of moving the event to the Community House, which was a centralized and known location for Sanibel residents to meet and enjoy the food.

The Sanibel Youth Choir will be singing, as well as the Big Arts Community Chorus. The two groups will be performing popular Thanksgiving songs and Hanukah songs.

City leaders, such as Mayor Kevin Ruane and City Manager Judy Zimomra will be present, as well.

The celebration is a non-denominational service and guests are encouraged to bring non-perishable items for the FISH food shelf.