For eight years, the nonprofit group Project Boon has coordinated a huge event in Fontana to provide a free Thanksgiving meal for needy residents.

In previous years, the organizers managed to avoid rainfall. This time, they weren't as lucky.

But despite the downpour on Nov. 27, Chris Suchanek, the executive director of Project Boon, and his team of 250 volunteers still managed to bring much joy to local residents with their Eat and Be Well celebration at the Cypress Center.

"Rain is a little problematic, but we made due," Suchanek said, noting that City of Fontana staff members were very efficient in moving the event indoors from its usual location at nearby Seville Park.

Project Boon prepared 1,500 plates of food, consisting of turkey, stuffing, green beans, and other traditional Thanksgiving favorites. Any leftover food would be given to people in shelters, recovery homes, and a veterans hospital, Suchanek said.

In addition, attendees had access to free services such as eye exams and haircuts and could also take canned food home with them.

Suchanek praised the efforts of the volunteers, who came from schools, businesses, sports teams, and other organizations.

One of those groups, the Knights of Columbus, gave away jackets, just in time for the cold winter weather.

Project Boon is now seeking donations for its canned food and toy drive in anticipation of its Christmas event in San Bernardino on Dec. 18. To make donations or to volunteer, visit www.projectboon.org.

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