Free Thanksgiving meals & ways to give back this year in Tucson

November 17, 2022
By Matt Sterner

The season of giving is in full effect

It’s that time of year when families gather around the table, dress up nicely, host awkward conversations, and eat more than their stomachs can handle.

Photo by Karolina Grabowska
Photo by Karolina Grabowska

However, Thanksgiving can be rather expensive, especially with turkey prices on the rise.

Luckily, folks in Tucson care for others in the community and there are a few options for those in need of a helping hand. Some of these events are offering gift cards and others are serving up free meals. Plus, it’s also a great opportunity for people to donate.

11th Annual Thanksgiving Festival 

Saturday, November 19 from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
3770 S. 16th Ave.

At this event, the Arizona Bilingual Newspaper will be giving away up to 1,000 gift cards. With these donations, folks will be able to a turkey for Thanksgiving. Plus, there’s plenty of fun happening at Tucson Clinica Medica Familiar during the event — food vendors, music, and other entertainment

For more information, follow Tucson Clinica Medica Familiar on Facebook

Gospel Rescue Mission’s Thanksgiving Blessings to Go

Wednesday,  November 23 from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.
4550 S. Palo Verde Rd.
Photo courtesy of Gospel Rescue Mission
Photo courtesy of Gospel Rescue Mission

The nonprofit is hosting its annual Thanksgiving Blessings to Go drive-thru and dine-in event. This loving experience invites community members to get Thanksgiving brunch a day before the big holiday. Those attending will also get a resource box while partaking in the event’s entertainment and kid-friendly activities.

Here’s what they still need:

Gospel Rescue Mission is still in need of 200 turkeys, pies, and other non-perishable food items. Also, if you’d like to help out, they’re still looking for more volunteers.

For more information, visit

Lerner and Rowe’s 2022 Thanksgiving Meal Giveaways

Saturday, November 19 at noon (while supplies last)
7090 S. Craycroft Rd.

This free drive-thru event is happening at the Manheim Tucson Auto Auction, and the Lerner and Rowe guys will be giving away 1,000 Thanksgiving packages (including goodies to make a traditional holiday meal).

Here’s how it’ll work:

“As the event is non-contact, families are asked to remain in their vehicles and just open their trunk or a side door to allow volunteers to easily place items inside. Please note that only one Thanksgiving meal package will be handed out per vehicle, on a first-come, first-served; while supplies last. No exceptions will be made. We appreciate your understanding in advance.”

For more information, visit

Salvation Army’s 38th Annual Thanksgiving Dinner

Thursday, November 24 from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.
1145 E. Fort Lowell Rd.

The Salvation Army is once again hosting a dinner and drive-thru celebration on Thanksgiving Day at the St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church. Posted on the Salvation Army’s website is all of the food they’re needing to pull off the event. Plus, volunteers are also needed on Thanksgiving day.

Here’s what they still need:
  • Turkeys
  • Stuffing
  • Instant potatoes
  • Canned green beans
  • Yams
  • Eggs
  • Cranberry sauce
  • Ready-to-serve rolls
  • Assorted pies
  • Brown gravy
  • Loaves of bread
  • Cartons and gallons of milk
  • Ready-to-serve pies
  • Monetary donations

For more information, visit

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