Turkey dinner a 120-year tradition

The Shabbona United Church of Christ’s 120th annual dinner and country bazaar will be held from 3 to 7 p.m. Nov. 21.

In 1893, the church’s predecessor, the Shabbona Congregational Church, held a 25-cent chicken dinner and 15-cent chicken supper the Thursday before Thanksgiving. A few years later, the menu changed to turkey, and the event has continued every year since. Many current church members remember their grandparents and great-grandparents taking part in the annual tradition.

The bazaar will begin at 3 p.m. in the fireside room off the sanctuary. It will feature homemade baked goods and crafts. The dinner will be served in the church dining room from 4:30 to 7 p.m. Tickets cost $10 for adults, $5 for children ages 5 to 10 and free for children 4 and younger. Generously sized carryouts are available from 4 to 6 p.m. for $10.

Each year, the traditional dinner features roast turkey, homemade stuffing, mashed potatoes with gravy, candied carrots, coleslaw, rolls, a beverage and a homemade dessert.

Old-time music will be performed in the sanctuary, with a sing-along of favorite songs. The church is located at 104 E. Navaho St. in Shabbona.