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Fort Bragg Cooks Prepare For Holiday Rush

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FORT BRAGG — If you are fretting about preparing Thanksgiving dinner for the family, imagine cooking dinner for 10,000.

That is what is happening at Fort Bragg where chefs are burning the midnight oil as they get ready to feed all the soldiers.

Thanksgiving is the biggest meal served for soldiers all year as chefs use more than 5,000 pounds of turkey, and 1,800 pounds of ham.

For the chefs that cook the meal, making the best spread for their fellow soldiers is a matter of pride.

"We take all of our turkeys, and we cook them all," said Fort Bragg cook SFC Allen Girardeau. "We do all of our dressings, and prepare all the salads, and all the vegetables the night before."

"The morning crew comes in, and takes care of the rolls and the dressing," Girardeau said.

For side dishes, there are hundreds of cans of peas, corn, and more than 6,000 apples, oranges, pears and tangerines.

While turkey is what Thanksgiving is all about, for many soldiers, dessert may actually be even more popular.

"There is always pumpkin pie, pecan pie, and apple pie." Fort Bragg cook SPC Kimberly Bowman.

Chefs and dining hall workers say dinner is the way of showing thanks to their fellow soldiers.