Rochester’s Salvation Army is ready to welcome community members back to the Thanksgiving table.

After the COVID-19 pandemic altered plans for the traditional meal last year, staff and volunteers are returning to tradition Thursday.

“It’s been quite a planning ordeal, but it’s going to be fun,” said Rebecca Snapp, the local Salvation Army’s director of community engagement.

She said the excitement can be seen -- and smelled -- as work is underway.

“Our cook is preparing all the turkeys, and we have volunteers coming in early in the week and that morning to finish all the preparation,” she said.

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Last year, the Salvation Army worked with Hy-Vee to provide food for people to make their own turkey dinners and nearby Chez Bojji, 301 N. Broadway Ave., provided free carry-out meals on the holiday.

This year, Salvation Army tables will be set for anyone who needs a meal, with serving from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the organization’s social services building, 115 First Ave. NE.

“It’s going to be a full Thanksgiving. All the turkey and stuffing, cranberry sauce and all the good stuff, and of course pumpkin pie for dessert,” Snapp said of the meal sponsored by Scheels.

“Everyone in the community is welcome,” she said.