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35th Moose Lodge Seniors Dinner Dec. 11
Larry Green Chevrolet pays for the turkeys

Larry Green Chevrolet general manager Graham Robertson, right, hands Kit Amolsch a check to cover the cost of buying turkeys for the Seniors Dinner at the Verde Valley Moose Lodge 1440 in Clarkdale on Dec. 11. VVN/Philip Wright<br /><br /><!-- 1upcrlf2 -->

Larry Green Chevrolet general manager Graham Robertson, right, hands Kit Amolsch a check to cover the cost of buying turkeys for the Seniors Dinner at the Verde Valley Moose Lodge 1440 in Clarkdale on Dec. 11. VVN/Philip Wright<br /><br /><!-- 1upcrlf2 -->

COTTONWOOD - The Verde Valley Moose Lodge 1440 of Clarkdale will hold its 35th annual Feed the Seniors Christmas Dinner Dec. 11 from noon until they're done.

Friday morning, Graham Robertson, general manager of Larry Green Chevrolet and Hyundai of Cottonwood, presented a check to pay for the dinner's turkeys to Kit Amolsch, Prelate of the Moose Lodge.

Robertson said that the Chevrolet dealership had already donated 100 turkeys to the Old Town Mission, and the Hyundai dealership donated 50 turkeys to St. Vincent DePaul.

"This is the 35th year that we've served a Senior Dinner for the Verde Valley," Amolsch said. "The Moose is all about children and seniors."

The Moose Lodge will hold a children's Christmas party Dec. 4.

"We try to find underprivileged children," Amolsch said. The kids make cookies and have a photograph taken with Santa Claus. "We always have gifts for their age group for every kid," he said.

A week after the children's party, the Moose Lodge holds the Senior Dinner. "We usually serve about 435 people," Amolsch said. "We work our tails off."

In addition to feeding hundreds of seniors Christmas dinner at the lodge, the Moose membership also prepares between 150 and 250 meals to be delivered by Meals On Wheels to seniors throughout the Verde Valley who cannot make it to the dinner at the lodge.

"In the past 35 years we've served over 15,380 dinners to strictly seniors," Amolsch said.

He said a huge kudos has to go out to Moose members Stubby and Judy Hearrell. Amolsch said that without them, the dinner just wouldn't happen.

Stubby has held every single office a person can hold in the Moose Lodge, locally and statewide.

Besides a great meal of turkey and all the fixings, prizes are given to the couple that has been married the longest and also to the oldest man and the oldest woman in attendance.

"Everybody gets a gift," Amolsch said. "We'll have Christmas music this year, and everyone gets raffle tickets."

Amolsch said that Larry Green has purchased the turkeys for this year's Senior Dinner. "Without them helping us out, we'd be in a bind," he said.

Typically, the Moose cooks 20 turkeys and 15 Virginia hams for the dinner. "We probably do 200 pounds of mashed potatoes and 200 pounds of sweet potatoes and stuffing," he said. The dinner takes another 150 pounds of string beans.

But the Children's Party and the Seniors' Dinner isn't the end of what the Moose Lodge does for the community during the holidays.

"We also do 70 food baskets for needy families," Amolsch said. "We get the names from counselors at local schools."

The food baskets for needy families include all the fixings for a holiday turkey or ham dinner. "Every kid in the family also gets a gift," he said.

"We do fundraising all year long."

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