Dan and Ray feed 3,000+ at annual Rendering Thanks event in Racine

NOW: Dan and Ray feed 3,000+ at annual Rendering Thanks event in Racine

RACINE, Wis. (CBS 58) -- The annual Dan & Ray Rendering Thanks event starts at 10 a.m. Thanksgiving morning. But volunteers and chefs show up before the sun comes up to start prepping. It takes more than 200 volunteers to feed more than 3,000 people. 

Jodie Hoffman-Ruffalo has been helping with the free community meal for seven years. 

"For me, I take a step back, and I'm like wow: money. Because food costs have risen," said Hoffman Ruffalo. "I'm like, 'how are we able to do this?'" 

Dan and Ray serve up ham, stuffing, sweet potatoes, green beans and more at Racine Festival Hall. The duo started the event during a time when they saw a big need for financial help in the community. 

"You can't stop something that makes you feel good or everybody else feel good," said co-founder Dan Johnson. "So, it kind of morphed into 'let's do it next year.' Now, 14 years later I don't know if there's an end in sight." 

Fourteen years later, the need has only grown. The banquet room is filled with tables and chairs for strangers to mingle and become neighbors. And takeout is offered, too. 

"There's a lot of people that can't get out. They don't have rides or they're not able to," said Johnson. 

Dan and Ray are serving their biggest crowd yet for Thanksgiving. The event runs from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m. 

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