Grocer/Charity Team Up To Give Thanks

Staff Report

Asheville – Thanksgiving is a time for all of us to reflect on the blessings we have received this past year. During these difficult times, so many here in our community will be facing an empty table on Thanksgiving Day. But thanks to so many wonderful people, companies, and organizations, these families who have struggled so much through these troubled days will be able to enjoy a memorable Thanksgiving with their family and friends.

Fourteen years ago, Eblen Charities had the privilege to work with long-time friend, board member, NBA star, NASCAR analyst and team owner Brad Daugherty, in creating the Giving Thanks at Thanksgiving program. Five years ago board member, long-time friend and supporter, former collegiate and NFL star quarterback and United States Congressman, Heath Shuler and the newly established Heath Shuler Foundation joined with Ingles Markets, the Eblen Charities board of directors, and many generous individuals and companies to provide more than 13,000 meals on Thanksgiving day.

“I have so much to be thankful for and the best way I know to show it is to share my blessings with others who may not be as fortunate,” states Heath Shuler. “I have been on the board of Eblen Charities for a number of years and have seen tens of thousands of the families that we assist each year, so there was no question what was the best way to reach the families I wanted to help during these tough times.”

Giving Thanks at Thanksgiving

The Giving Thanks at Thanksgiving will be held this Wednesday, November 21st, the day before Thanksgiving, from 9 am to 5 pm in front of the Ingles in the South Forest Shopping Center on Hendersonville Road.

Thanks to Heath, Ingles Markets, the Heath Shuler Foundation, Duke Energy, Wicked Weed, Friday’s Staffing, iHeart Radio, WLOS-TV, and the Asheville Radio Group, and a great number of the Eblen Charities Board and volunteers, we will again be expanding the program to provide the ‘fixins’ to the turkeys to provide an entire Thanksgiving meal to nearly 1,300 families this year. Each turkey weighs between ten and fourteen pounds which allows even the largest table to feed their families and friends (feeds between 12-15 people). The Giving Thanks at Thanksgiving Meal will include: turkey, green beans, instant potatoes, dinner rolls, cake mix, and frosting.

“This program has grown so much in the past ten years thanks to Bobby Ingle, Jim Lanning, Tom Outlaw, and Melissa Leavell at Ingles; Heath Shuler, Rick Guthy and Ryan Guthy of Wicked Weed, Deborah Pressley of Friday’s Staffing, Jason Walls at Duke Energy, Brian Hall and everyone at iHeart Radio, Joe Fishleigh and everyone at WLOS, all of our board members and everyone who has donated to share Thanksgiving with the families we serve,” remarked Bill Murdock, Executive Director of Eblen Charities.

For more information on how you can help families who may be less fortunate this Thanksgiving by helping purchase a turkey for $10, please contact Bill Murdock at 828-42-2848 or by email at


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