Ocean City Community Serves Up Kindness, Meals For Thanksgiving

Ocean City Community Serves Up Kindness, Meals For Thanksgiving

From left, Ocean City High School juniors Alec Wisnefski, Tommy Lex and Aidan Fasy volunteer to help out with Thanksgiving dinner deliveries.


Each year, a group of Ocean City residents, business owners and city officials come together to provide holiday meals to residents of the city’s low-income housing complexes.

On Wednesday, volunteers from OCNJ CARE, a charitable organization headed by Ocean City resident Drew Fasy, along with Kathy Sykes and Jen Bowman, once again provided the meals to those in need on Wednesday for Thanksgiving dinner.

Bill McGinnity of Nobil Catering made the meals, and the food ministry at St. Peter’s United Methodist Church also helped out. Not to mention the many area businesses who provided rolls, a holiday ornament, and other items to create the holiday basket.

“We are very grateful to the city and St. Peter’s Church and to all of the volunteers,” Fasy said as he stopped for a moment in between stacking tubs filled with bagged-up dinners into a van for delivery outside of St. Peter’s Church. “Really, none of this could be possible without them.”

From left, OCNJ CARE members Jen Bowman and Kathy Sykes, along with Fran Driscoll, a Bayview Manor resident, and Drew Fasy, head of OCNJ CARE, stand next to a table filled with food bags.

This year, thanks to the overwhelming generosity of the community, 250 meals were delivered to Speitel Commons, Bayview Manor, Wesley by The Bay and to individual homes. Each person was given a turkey dinner, complete with mashed potatoes, vegetables and dessert.

Flo Driscoll, a resident at Bayview Manor who acts as a liaison for the food deliveries, said that the residents appreciate the kindness and generosity of Fasy and the others who donate their time and their efforts to provide the residents special holiday dinners.

Fasy, Bowman and Sykes delivered dozens of meals to Bayview Manor and Speitel Commons, two housing complexes for senior citizens.

“The residents appreciate it every year. They look forward to it,” Driscoll said, adding that she is especially thankful to Fasy for all of the work he does.

Daniel Kelchner, director of Ocean City Community Services, helps bag up meals at St. Peter’s Church with Social Services Director Samantha Kurtz-Seif and OCNJ CARE member Kathy Sykes.

The volunteers started the morning at Cousin’s Restaurant, where they picked up the meals from McGinnity.

They took them to St Peter’s, where they put the meals in bags with desserts, cookies, handmade cards by the Ocean City High School Key Club, and turkey ornaments and packed them into vehicles for deliveries.

Fasy said that 250 meals are the most that OCNJ Care has delivered since the volunteers began giving people meals for the holidays at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The team of volunteers stops at Wesley by the Bay to deliver meals.

During other holiday deliveries, OCNJ CARE gave out anywhere from 150 to 200 meals. Fasy attributed the increase to the city’s Social Services Department and the Community Services Department headed by Daniel Kelchner, referring people in need.

Each resident received a note from Mayor Jay Gillian, Fasy, Bowman and Sykes, offering best holiday wishes on behalf of OCNJ CARE.

“This basket was created for you through a partnership of small businesses, community organizations and volunteers in Ocean City. We hope it brings joy to you and your family, and that you have a happy Thanksgiving!”

From left, volunteer Curt Baker, Kathy Thompson, of St. Peter’s, and Drew Fasy get the turkey dinners ready for delivery.