Thousands attend Red Andrews Christmas Dinner in Oklahoma City

Thousands of people attended the annual Red Andrews Christmas Dinner on Christmas Day at the Cox Convention Center in Oklahoma City.
by Matt Dinger Published: December 26, 2013
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More than 5,500 hot dinners were served, and twice as many toys given to children at the annual Red Andrews Christmas Dinner.

The southwest corner of Cox Convention Center was packed with people for the dinner Wednesday, and three lines for food snaked around the exhibit hall.

Volunteers said people were waiting outside the building for the meal before 7 a.m.

Gary Goldman, restaurant operations director for Chesapeake Energy Corp. and an organizer for the event, said volunteers prepared food for about 5,500 people and had to close the doors to diners about 3 p.m.

Close to 15,000 toys were donated for the event, Goldman said, and Santa Claus made an appearance for photo opportunities.

Georgianna Ross, of Oklahoma City, and her daughter, Alyssa, came downtown for Christmas dinner for the first time.

“My oven doesn't work, so I couldn't make a turkey this year. I always cook,” Ross said.

Alyssa, 10, said her favorite part of the dinner was the turkey.

After finishing their meal, they stood in the meandering line for toys but hadn't decided which toys Alyssa was going to take home.

Each child in attendance was allowed to take three toys from a length of tables piled high with an assortment of Barbies, stuffed toys and other items, Goldman said.

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by Matt Dinger
Court Reporter
Matt Dinger was born and raised in Oklahoma City. He has worked in OPUBCO's News and Information Center since 2006, and has been assigned to the breaking news desk since its formation in fall 2008. He specializes in crime and police reporting.
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