Since 2000, The Friendship Feast of Dodge City has been feeding people at the First Presbyterian Church on Central Avenue.

The feast began when members of the church had heard a homeless man was living under a bridge in Dodge City. The members soon reached out to the man to help him and the idea was to cook him food. The first feast occurred 2 weeks before Christmas in 2000 and the doors have been open ever since.

"We applied for our annual grant through the Community Foundation and it was approved,"  kitchen manager Sarah Speakman said. "It came at a perfect time because our freezer went out and we needed a replacement.

"As soon as it came in we filled it up the first day."

During the summer months the feast serves around 100 people a day Monday through Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. and serves approximately 70 people a day during the winter months.

The non-profit Friendship Feast Association was formed in 2012 to serve meals to the public instead of strictly being done by the church.

The feast is a donation-driven organization, accepting food and financial donations along with equipment made by organizations and individuals in the community.

"We always say, 'We together are touching lives and making friends, one hot meal at a time,'" Speakman said. "We are still serving our average daily amount and donations are always welcome.

"We are very grateful to the Community Foundation for the freezer."

Speakman added that volunteers are needed as well, mostly on Wednesday's and especially Friday's.

To donate to the Friendship Feast, they can be sent to P.O. Box 1075, Dodge City, Kansas 67801 or dropped off at the First Presbyterian Church at 803 Central Ave. in Dodge City.

To volunteer or make a donation in person, visit the church or contact Speakman at 620-408-5594.

To contact the writer email vmarshall@dodgeglobe.com