Green Bay restaurant serves free Thanksgiving meals, delivers turkey to police department

Posted at 10:28 PM, Nov 26, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-26 23:28:05-05

Not everyone has a dinner to put on the table every Thanksgiving.

Some people have work during the holiday. Other people had to quarantine away from the family members because of the coronavirus pandemic. So one Green Bay restaurant served free Thanksgiving meals to anyone who needed it in the community.

"[We did it] with so many people out of work due to Covid, and a lot of people alone because they can't have family over," JJ Cafe & Grill co-owner Jamie Waller said.

Waller's restaurant served free turkey meals to anyone in need, even police officers hard at work.

"Everybody else, you know a lot of our first responders are trying to help too," Waller said. "We're gonna bring meals over to the Green Bay Police Department because they're working today and we want to help them out too."

Officers say the meal was a pleasant change.

"It probably would have been a packed sandwich and a bag of Doritos like it normally is for lunch for everyday," Green Bay Police Lieutenant Jason Allen said.

And in the time of a pandemic, thousands of Northeast Wisconsinites were alone for Thanksgiving.

Working on a holiday, it does take away from time with our family where we're not going to the family functions like other people are," Allen said.

So with all the free time, Waller wanted to pay it forward to the community.

"This year, it means a lot more to them [the community] than it does to us, obviously," Waller said. "None of us are really doing anything today either."

Whether it was someone with work today or simply a person in need, JJ Cafe & Grill wanted to make sure Northeast Wisconsin filled up on turkey.

"It still feels like a home away from home because we're still getting in that home-cooked meal," Allen said.