290 guests (266 adults and 24 children) from the community received meals the evening of May 10. Redstone volunteers welcomed guests, distributed meal tokens, served beverages, washed dishes, and visited with the guests. Moreover, each volunteer was encouraged to sit down and eat a meal with the guests.
Jessi Graff, a member of the Redstone Team, said serving at The Banquet was a great experience. "I spent my time washing dishes and was very humbled by the number of thank yous and blessings I received from guests as they left. You could tell that we had helped meet their needs and that they very much appreciated our service and commitment to making it better."
For Redstone volunteer, Amy Carlisle, this was her second time volunteering at The Banquet. "Although my first volunteer experience at The Banquet was enjoyable, my second experience was even more fulfilling and fun! I loved visiting with the guests and hearing their stories. One elderly gentleman shared stories with me for nearly 30 minutes, covering topics from his childhood all the way to the present. He made me laugh so many times, and I was touched that he shared so much with me. It's a memory that will last with me forever."
The Banquet meal ministry was founded in 1985 starting with just one meal per week. It now serves 13 meals per week to the community at two locations – entirely volunteer-based. In 2017, The Banquet served 196,000 meals, and at least 25,000 of those meals were served to children under 12.