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First-day Thanksgiving Baskets registrations at Goodman Center break all previous records

More than 2,200 families registered for GCC’s Thanksgiving Baskets 

Madison, WI Oct. 13, 2020 – On Monday, Oct. 12, the Goodman Community Center opened registration for its annual Thanksgiving Basket Drive, and 2,216 families and individuals have signed up to receive a basket. This is nearly 1,000 more registrants than the same time last year.  

“We’ve seen unprecedented levels of demand in our food pantry since the coronavirus hit Wisconsin, so this outpouring of requests early on in the registration process isn’t surprising,” said Francesca Frisque, Goodman Center Food Pantry Coordinator. “Obviously, we wish people didn’t have to worry about where their holiday meal will come from, but we’re also glad that we can be a reliable source of help.” 

For the last 32 years, the Goodman Center has provided Dane County families with everything they need to prepare a Thanksgiving meal at home, and this year, the Center has set a goal of serving 4,000 families.  

The registration period is scheduled to run through Oct. 23, but GCC may be forced to close registration early. This record setting pace has the Goodman Community Center concerned about its capacity to reach everyone and about the state of hunger in our community. 

As in previous years, the Goodman Center has partnered with MMSD social workers to identify families in highest need and ensure they get registered for a basket. The Center has also made the registration process easy, creating a simple online form that is available in three languages: English, Spanish and Hmong. 

Many people still call in to register by phone. “Our registration line was ringing off the hook yesterday, and we expect that to continue,” said Frisque. “We’re so thankful for the volunteers who are willing to help field the calls and answer questions. We’re lucky to have the most supportive community around.” 

The Goodman Community Center is seeking community support by way of food donations, financial contributions and volunteers. It will take a village to provide 4,000 Dane County families with a Thanksgiving feast. People who are interested in helping can learn more at 

How to register for a basket: 

Registration is open to Dane County residents from Monday, Oct. 12, through Friday, Oct. 23. 

  • Register online: 
  • Register by phone: 608-204-8018, Mon. – Fri., 12:30 – 6pm.  

How to help: 

  • Host a food drive (in person or virtual): We have photos, posters, grocery lists and helpful tips to make your drive successful. Downloadable files are available on our website: 
  • Make a financial gift: Funds raised are used to purchase turkeys, perishable items and items needed to completely fill baskets. Donate online at 
  • Volunteer your time: Many volunteers are needed to make this event a success. Contact GCC Volunteer Manager Mai Lor Yang for more information: or 608-204-8056. 

About the Goodman Community Center 

The Goodman Community Center is the largest community center in Dane County. The center offers many programs to strengthen the lives of preschoolers through teens, meals and social activities for older adults, a food pantry, a gymnasium and fitness center, catering services and community space. For more information about the Center, visit

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