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NEAT community dinners began when a need in our community was recognized—that Arlington's elderly and lower income population might not often get the opportunity to enjoy a free restaurant style dinner out where they can meet new people and be treated as guests in a welcoming environment. NEAT provides this service with the help of many volunteers, Food Link (providing fresh flowers, coffee, tea, desserts, bread, and fruit), discounted dinners from local restaurants, and donations from Arlington EATS, St. John's Episcopal (generously donates use of their church hall and kitchen), Park Avenue Congregational, and individual donations.

Guests arrive at 5:00pm and seat themselves at one of the 10 tables—allowing us to serve up to 80 people at each dinner. People arrive in groups big and small, families, or alone and often take the time to meet new folks at their table. Our tables are set with fresh flowers, colored napkins with utensils, pitchers of water, and fresh bread and butter. Salad is served first, followed by a hot dinner. We've served pasta with chicken, kabobs and rice, pizza, and even BBQ! All plates are cleared by volunteer servers and guests can help themselves at the dessert table and to more tea or decaf coffee as they wish. All our guests leave with a full stomach as well as free fruit to take home and enjoy.

>>PHOTO: This is Laura unloading donations from Food Link for one of our dinners. It's because of her determination and dedication that we've come together and are now a non-profit organization!

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