DENVER (CBS4) – For 28 years, the Optimist Club of Monaco South has served Thanksgiving dinner at the Boys & Girls Club, a meal that for many has become a tradition.

“I’ve probably been coming to this dinner since I was six-years-old,” said Stephanie Vialpando, a mother of 3.

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Vialpando grew up at the Owens Boys & Girls Club, and now her children are following in her footsteps

“The same directors were here when I was young are here today, so not only did they coach me, they coached my kids,” Vialpando told CBS4. 

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Anthony Lopez volunteers as a football coach at the club. He’s thankful for all the opportunities his children get there. 

“I’ve given a lot of time, as much as I could before to help out with the kids, because I come from the streets too. I know how it is to be out like that, so if I can give something back and give the kids a positive role model, so to speak, that makes me happy to do for them,” Lopez said. 

LINK: Together 4 Colorado Toy Drive

The Optimist Club puts on a full spread, complete with all the traditional Thanksgiving trimmings.

(credit CBS)

“She likes the mash potatoes,” Rosa Sanchez said of her 4-year-old daughter.

Sanchez’s daughter is too young to be a member, but the dinner has been a family tradition since she went to the club when she was a child.

“I have my nephews coming here too, so we all have our whole family coming here. We love it. We enjoy it,” Sanchez told CBS4.

(credit CBS)

The entire club community is welcome at this meal. It’s a tradition that has survived the test of time.

The Together 4 Colorado Toy Drive seeks to provide a new toy for every member of the Boys & Girls Clubs. There are donation bins in participating King Soopers stores through December 24th.


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