Long lines, but plenty of grub
For those without accommodating friends, family or simply the inclination to spend the day in the kitchen, Rusty’s Hickory House will once again serve up a Thanksgiving feast for one and all.
The line forms early, but the buffet at the West Main Street restaurant will officially get under way at 1 p.m. and continue until the food runs out – usually at around 7 or 8 p.m., reports Hickory House owner Paul Dioguardi.
The free Thanksgiving meal has long been a tradition at the Aspen eatery, though donations are readily accepted. Proceeds from the annual feast always benefit a local cause. For the past couple of years, the event has raised $2,000 to $2,500, Dioguardi said.
For the first time this year, a specific contribution is suggested – $5, with the proceeds going to the Aspen Buddy Program.
“It’s just a suggestion, that’s all it is,” Dioguardi stressed. “We figure if we can feed 1,000 people, we can raise upward of $5,000 this year.”
Whatever the contribution, the meal constitutes a full-fledged dinner deal in Aspen. Dioguardi n See Feast on page 4
n continued from page 1
and his restaurant crew have been working into the wee hours this week in preparation for hosting 1,000 or more dinner guests.
The menu will feature 160 pounds of roast beef and about 60 turkeys, which were smoked Tuesday and Wednesday. The Hickory House bought some of the birds; the rest were donated.
“We’ve had more than we’ve ever had come in from the public,” Dioguardi said.
The fixins will include stuffing, 250 pounds of green beans and 500 pounds of potatoes for “real mashed potatoes – hand-peeled ourselves – none of that instant stuff,” he said.
In addition, Main Street Bakery and Cafe has, as usual, donated the bread for the meal, and Clark’s Market, City Market and Paradise Bakery have all donated various desserts. The Hickory House furnishes some of the deserts as well.
The Hickory House will be open for breakfast today as usual, but will close at 11:30 a.m. so the restaurant staff and volunteers can prepare for the afternoon banquet.
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Had Hailey Swirbul decided against going to Europe, she would not have finished with a career-best result in Friday’s World Cup opener. Yes, there was a time, and not long ago, when the U.S. ski team member and Roaring Fork Valley native questioned her desire to put on a race bib.