What is Thanksgiving without a pie at the dinner table? Actually, a lot of people, such as veterans, the elderly, and families in need, don’t get a chance to eat dessert at all – something that so many people take for granted. Sometimes having something so simple as a freshly baked pie for dessert can be the difference between having a happy and memorable holiday, and one that is a joyless blur. That’s because the selfless act of one person taking the time to think about another person’s happiness and well-being is what the holidays are all about.
It was seven years ago that Maureen Griffin Tomczak started a yearly holiday tradition called Pie It Forward. This is essentially a community baking event, where pies are collected to hand out to those in need. The pies are considered the icing on the cake for holiday meals delivered to people who might otherwise go without. Once the pies are collected, they are bundled together with delicious meals, and disseminated throughout Western New York by the Buffalo City Mission as part of BCM’s Turkey Express for the homebound.
Each year, community members come together to bake and collect the pies. The pies are then dropped off at various Pie It Forward locations, such as JAM Parkside, which recently enlisted to be a drop-off location. Incredibly, this year’s collection event aims at amassing 1000 pies! With that astonishing goal in mind, it’s important to realize that the feat cannot be accomplished without buy-in from those who have the ability to either purchase or bake the pies.
“To join us, simply bring a full-sized pie to JAM (301 Parkside Avenue, Buffalo, 14214) on Saturday, November 23 or Sunday, November 24 between 11am and 3pm. Pies can be homemade or store bought and should be delivered ready to serve and individually wrapped in plastic wrap, aluminum foil or boxes from the store/bakery. JAM is a community owned café in Buffalo’s Parkside neighborhood. Operating since March, JAM is excited to be able to engage the community to help those in greater need.” – JAM Parkside
Lead image: Photo by FitNish Media