The Good, the Bird and the Hungry

If you're among those whose most frequent use of this publication is as a blanket, then a home-cooked feast or a chow-down at a fancy restaurant may not be in the cards for you this Turkey Day. If you're wondering how you're going to fill your belly or the bellies of your family on the holiday, here are some local shelters and soup kitchens that offer a Thanksgiving meal:

St. Vincent de Paul--The society serves dinner to those in need at all of its five dining-room locations around the Valley: 119 South Ninth Avenue; the SVD Center at 420 West Watkins; 15832 North Hollyhock in Surprise; 14010 North El Mirage Road in El Mirage; and 67 West Broadway in Mesa. For times and more specific information, call Megan Ruffner or Sarah Hare (261-6806, 261-6889).

Andre House--Run by the Priests of the Holy Cross, but financed entirely by private donations, this shelter serves dinner from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day, "Just like we do every other day of the year," says a spokesman. But instead of the usual Thursday menu--bean burritos--the bill of fare this Thursday will probably include turkey soup, pumpkin pie and the like. 1002 West Polk. 252-9023.

Phoenix Rescue Mission--Formerly known as the Phoenix Gospel Mission, the agency serves a holiday-style dinner six times throughout the week--at 5 p.m. Wednesday, November 25; at noon and 5 p.m. Thursday, November 26; at 5 p.m. Friday, November 27; at 5 p.m. Saturday, November 28; and at noon Sunday, November 29. 1801 South 35th Avenue, two blocks south of Buckeye. 233-0300, 233-2647.

The Salvation Army--The venerable organization offers Thanksgiving eats at a variety of times, dates and locations around the Valley. For specific information, call 267-4100.

Those of us lucky enough not to need such services may wish to pitch in on the serving. One way is to help out Nick Ligidakis, chef of Cafe Nikos, 3360 North Hayden in Scottsdale (Scottsdale and Osborn), on his annual food-for-the-needy project. Ligidakis, who closes down his cafe for the week to devote himself full-time to cooking for down-on-their-luck Valleyites, needs volunteers to prepare and deliver. Especially needed are drivers on Thanksgiving Day. Call 423-8977 for more information.

--M. V. Moorhead