Area invited to dine at ‘Longest Table’

The Longest Table, held for the first time in 2016, attracted more than 270 participants. 
-- File photo

The Longest Table, held for the first time in 2016, attracted more than 270 participants. -- File photo

STEUBENVILLE — The Longest Table, a community outdoor dining experience, will return for a second year as Urban Mission Ministries plans for the Sept. 24 event that begins at 1 p.m.

The fundraiser raises awareness of hunger issues in the Ohio Valley during Hunger Action Month, which is observed in September, according to the Rev. Ashley Steele, the mission’s executive director.

But it also is “an opportunity to bring our community, both far and near, together to dine at the ‘longest table’ our community has ever seen.”

The sit-down, family-style dinner will be staged along North Street as was last year’s event, which was attended by more than 270 people. The mission is located at 301 N. Fifth St.

“We’re going to do it again, and we will continue to use that event to draw awareness of hunger issues,” Steele said recently.

“This year our focus will be on the possibilities surrounding how to help end hunger in the community, so we don’t just want to focus on the negative statistics,” Steele said. “We want to show what good is happening in the community to help address hunger and what more could be done. Our (overall year’s) theme is all about growing possibilities, so we just want to keep that as a focus for The Longest Table this year,” she said.

The fundraiser benefits Urban Mission and its hunger ministries. Tickets are $30 for adults and $15 for students. It is free for children five and younger. To purchase tickets, mail checks to 301 N. Fifth St., Steubenville, Ohio, 43952; buy them online at www.urbanmission.org; or call (740) 282-8010. To volunteer for the event, call the same number or e-mail vslappy@urbanmission.org.

The event will feature locally sourced food, community garden vegetables, live entertainment, local artisans and urban crafters.

Attendees should plan to arrive between 1 p.m. and 1:30 p.m., according to Steele, providing time to park, get oriented with the table and mingle. The meal will be served at 2 p.m., but guests arriving early will be treated to drinks and appetizers, entertainment and opportunities to bid on donated gift items.

Dress is casual. This is a time to relax and enjoy a meal in the company of friends and great Ohio fall weather. Shaded areas also will be available,” according to a promotional flyer.

Parking is available near the Urban Mission Warehouse at 311 N. Sixth St. and the Urban Mission Church, 301 N. Fifth St. Parking attendants will be present to direct guests to available parking areas. Designated handicapped parking spaces also will be available and clearly marked. Special arrangements also may be made in advance.

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