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Ypsilanti Restaurant Offers Free Thanksgiving Day Meals To Give Back To The Community

Lisa Barry

Thanksgiving is typically a time when family and friends get together, but not everyone is fortunate enough to have that experience.

An Ypsilanti restaurant is offering free Thanksgiving dinners Thursday as a way of giving back to the community.

In the kitchen at Aubree's Depot Town restaurant in Ypsilanti, chefs will be switching from making pizza and sandwiches to cooking turkey and stuffing for a free Thanksgiving Day meal.

Jeff Halas, regional operations director of Aubree’s Pizzeria and Grill, says their reason is simple: giving people who are alone or in need on Thanksgiving somewhere to go.

"It’s all about the community,” says Halus.  “Of course, everybody wants a good home-cooked meal, so they can find that good home-cooked meal and then share the experience with maybe their neighbors, the people they go to church with, maybe the people they hang out with, whatever, so they can spend it here at Aubrees."

Credit Lisa Barry
Jeff Halus, Regional operations director of Aubree’s Pizzeria and Grill

Halus says it’s their way of giving back to the community, and no one will be turned away during their free meal offering between noon and 4 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day.

Rob Costa is the general manager at Aubree’s Depot location restaurant.  He says he doesn’t mind working on Thanksgiving Day offering free Thanksgiving Dinners and says he looks at it as an adventure.

“It’s the first time here, and I think a great way to give back to the community in which we operate, so it’s a great time.  I’m looking forward to it a lot actually,” says Costa.  “I can imagine that we’re going to see quite a bit of people.  Hopefully, we sell out all of the turkey and dressing for sure.”

Local university students who could not make it home for the holiday are also welcome.  Aubree’s is expecting 400-500 people to take advantage of the free meals, available between noon and 4 p.m.

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— Lisa Barry is the host of All Things Considered on WEMU. You can contact Lisa at 734.487.3363, on Twitter @LisaWEMU, or email her at

Lisa Barry was a reporter, and host of All Things Considered on 89.1 WEMU.
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