A steak dinner night to raise funds for the Vankleek Hill Food Bank is being held at the Windsor Tavern on Friday, December 11.

The event is being organized by Vankleek Hill’s Don Dubois, who has already accumulated more than $1,600 in door and raffle prizes. Tickets are $17 for the steak dinner, out of which $2 from each meal sold will be donated to the local food bank.

“It’s Christmas and I know the Vankleek Hill Food Bank has seen more of a need right now to help people,” says Dubois, explaining why he is organizing the event. “You don’t know what’s happening in your neighbor’s house until you actually see the amount of requests there have been at food banks this year.”

There will be two dinner servings during the evening: one at 5:30 pm, followed by a second serving at 7 pm. A maximum of 40 tickets is available for each serving in order to ensure proper social distancing and adherence to COVID-19 protocols. Tables at the Windsor have been set up to allow for more space and there are Plexiglas panels separating the tables; the bar has also had a panel installed.

Draw tickets for most of the $1,600 value in prizes for the evening – including dinners at restaurants, gas cards and gift certificates from local shops – will be available on site. Draw tickets will be sold for $10 for three tickets or seven tickets for $20.

The event’s organizer, who lost his own full-time employment during the COVID-19 pandemic, says he has been one of the lucky ones in 2020.

“I’ve had some bad luck this year, but a lot of people have it worse than us,” Dubois reflects, adding the fundraiser is not just about raising money for people during the holidays, but to help ensure the local food bank has the funds to assist people in the community year-round.

“Even after Christmas people will still be hungry.”

Support for the fundraiser has been strong among local businesses for the fundraiser.

“Absolutely no one has said ‘no’ to me.” Dubois notes, adding everyone who attends will have a very good chance of taking home a price more valuable than their evening out. “We have about 25 prizes, so if there’s 80 people who come out for dinner, they’ve got about a 25-per-cent-chance of winning at least one gift.”

Anyone one who wishes to purchase tickets for the December 11 steak dinner fundraiser can call the Windsor Tavern at 613-678-2122 to make a reservation.