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Free community meal and events in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

Morris, Minn. -- Morris Community Meal will highlight foods of oppression at the Morris Senior Community Center for January's Community Meal on Monday, Jan. 16, 2012. The project serves warm, made-from-scratch meals each month, which are open to all members of the Stevens County community. This month, volunteers will collaborate with the Morris Human Rights Commission and University of Minnesota, Morris's Office of Equity, Diversity, and Intercultural Programs.

This month's meal is the final event in UMM's 3rd Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service. Volunteers will spend the day completing service projects at service in Morris and surrounding communities. Afternoon programming, including community speakers and a march to the Senior Center, are open to the public, beginning at 4:30 p.m. at the Morris Theatre.

The Community Meal is open to every member of the Stevens County community and entirely free of charge. Food options for people with special diets, such as gluten-free, diabetic, vegan and vegetarian, are always available, as are child friendly options. Meals are served from 5:30 until 7 p.m. one Monday each month while the University is in session. The Morris Senior Community Center is located at 603 Oregon Avenue in Morris.

In serving the community meal, the sponsors hope to initiate new connections among community members and provide a free warm meal to those who may not normally be afforded one.

Support for Community Meal is provided by a broad coalition of local businesses and organizations. This spring, the collaborating and sponsoring organizations include: Morris Human Rights Commission, Morris Lions Club, Morris Kiwanis, Bank of the West, UMM Office of Community Engagement, UMM Office of Equity, Diversity, and Intercultural Programs, Morris Senior Community Center, Pomme de Terre Food Co-op, Willie's Super Valu, and the Stevens Community Medical Center.

Organizers are looking for businesses and community organizations that would like to serve as meal sponsors next year, as well as volunteers to help cook. Community members can come to the Morris Senior Center between 2 and 6 p.m. on the day of the meal to help out, or Sunday night from 4 until 8 p.m. To get involved as a sponsor or volunteer, contact Jenna Deardorff in the Office of Community Engagement at 320-589-6457 or