Sisters host drive thru Spaghetti Dinner

April 19, 2022 by

Last year, in the midst of Covid-19 precautions, the Sisters of St. Joseph of Concordia took on what at first seemed to be an impossible task — take the beloved annual Motherhouse Spaghetti Dinner, along with the silent auction and the raffle, and turn it into a drive-thru and online event.

It sounded impossible, but thanks to the generous support of the public, the ingenuity of the sisters and the hard work of the staff and volunteers, the annual fundraiser was possible, and a success. It was a welcome change after the disappointment of having to completely cancel the event in 2020, right as Covid-19 really took hold in the area.

This year, out of an abundance of caution, the dinner remained as a drive-thru to minimize contact, and the raffle and auction again took place online. With the benefit of a year of experience and planning by the Development Staff and Culinary Team, this year’s event took off without a hitch!

Thanks to the overwhelming support and generosity of our donors and supporters, this year’s March 20 event wasn’t just possible — it was a success!

Assistant Development Director Ambria Gilliland was once again amazed by the community response.
“This year’s dinner looked a bit different, but it was so much fun. I’m grateful for everyone’s patience with us as we continued to adapt to all the necessary changes,” Gilliland said.

Some of the changes from the traditional in-person meal that had been a staple of the dinner for so many years pre-Covid?

• This year the dinner was completely done by pre-orders so the kitchen staff was prepared and to reduce waste.
• The dinner was done only as a drive-thru and carry-out.
• The usual live silent auction instead was done as an online auction on the Hansen Online Auction website out of Beloit, Kansas.
This allowed customers to review all of the items in the auction and do all their bidding and payment from the comfort of their own homes. This year’s event had 120 items up for auction on the electronic bidding site.
• Raffle tickets were sold both in advance and in person on the day of the event. However, the actual drawing was done on a Facebook Live video later that afternoon. Many of the sisters enjoyed helping with the drawings.
• There was a drive-thru bake sale table at the event. The sale included four types of cookies: monster, chocolate chip, snicker doodle and peanut butter, and four types of bread: cinnamon rolls, yeast bread, dinner rolls and banana bread.
• Sadly, there was no way to invite people inside to sit and chat with the sisters this year due to Covid restrictions. However, many of the sisters came out to help direct traffic, take food to cars or just wave at the visitors from a safe distance.

“We are constantly amazed by the generosity of our friends and donors,” said Sister Jan McCormick, Director of Development.
“I was so pleased with the outcome of the dinner. It was so nice to see everyone if only for a few minutes,” Gilliland said.

“We were excited to see several new faces come through the drive-thru. And our sisters had a blast waving at all of our new and familiar friends.”

“I want to give a huge ‘thank you’ to everyone who supported this event through meal tickets, raffle tickets, donations and prayers. It’s so heartwarming to see everyone come together,” Gilliland said.
Following the dinner service, many sisters gathered in the dining room to watch and assist with the raffle drawing.

Raffle ticket winners were:
• Mary Schlick — $500
• Joyce Dinges — $250
• Kimmy Smith — $150
• Myrna Shelton — $100
• Jerome Morgan — $100
• Diane Nelson — $100
• Sherry Jeffery — $100
• Gerry Parker — $100
• Elaine Milke — Kansas City Royals baseball tickets
• Rodney Reel — Quilt
• Marsha Strang — Popcorn Popper
• Alex Sweet — $25 Apple- bees gift card
• Tom Gennette — $25 Darden gift card
• Gene Meier — $25 Buffalo Wild Wings gift card
• Kip Gilliland — $50 Darden gift card
• Philip Baker — $50 Darden gift card
• Catherine Doud — Llama
“The support from the community was amazing! The weather cooperated for the most part and it was great to see so many familiar faces!” Gilliland said.
Thank you again for your generous support. We hope you had fun.
We still don’t know what next year will bring, but we hope to see you again in whatever form the Spaghetti Dinner returns!

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