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Hy-Vee Customers Help Mr. Thanksgiving Buy Turkeys


Hy-Vee presented Mr. Thanksgiving with a big check yesterday. Bob Vogelbaugh accepted the 13,000 dollars to help pay for his annual Thanksgiving dinner.

The money came from people who shop at all the Hy-Vee stores in the Quad Cities.

Mr. Thanksgiving started bringing people together more than 50 years ago. He was managing a small grocery store in Moline and learned some customers would be alone.

"Primarily, my mature customers... I don't use 'old' because that is me now... but I asked the elder lady 'what are you doing for the upcoming holiday?' and it was almost and unison answer. I thought 'I have a kitchen and extra little rooms,' so I could do it here."

Hy-Vee began helping raise money for the turkey dinner in 2010, by selling "turkey cards" at all the local stores.

"Everybody thinks it is a charity dinner. It's all walks of life. Are there people in need? Yes, but there are also people who are not. It is all about pilgrims and indians getting together."

So far, Hy-Vee customers have raised over 160,000 dollars. And, employees also help prepare the meals.

Last Thanksgiving, Vogelbaugh served over 3,000, drive-up meals.