Miller Foods has one more day of selling Thanksgiving turkeys at its Thanks for Giving Thanksgiving tent before the family closes for the holiday.
The Avon family has been selling turkeys for nearly 60 years and has done the holiday tent for at least 15.
On average Miller Foods sells about 1,200 to 1,500 turkeys in the holiday tent and thousands through wholesale, including delivery and gift orders, according to Capri Frank, project manager for her family's business. Online orders have increased this year, she said.
"They come from all over. People move and they drive back," Frank said. "Two people were at a wedding the other day over here at St. Ann's. They ended up coming over and want us to ship their turkeys to Florida for the holiday."
Patrons sampled Thanksgiving dinner items and sides as they went through the tent Tuesday, as well as an array of Miller Foods pies from apple cranberry to sweet potato.
Frank said Thanksgiving holds a special place in her family's heart. Many of them work or volunteer their time at the tent – nine on Tuesday, typically the busiest business day before the holiday. Many of friends, acquaintances, staff and community members volunteer their time to help out at the tent.
"It's just this great tradition and it gets better and better every year," Frank said. "The best part is seeing people that we see year at after year, hearing their stories. Someone came in this morning, 57 years they've been coming back to buy their turkey."
Meeting new people is also a rewarding part of the Thanksgiving tent, she said.
In the spirit of the giving season, a big part of the tradition is also helping local organizations like Fidelco and featuring local businesses like J. Foster. Fidelco had a display in the tent that showcased its wine and candle benefit. All of the proceeds from purchases made online through the organization benefit the guide dog foundation.
"We don't necessarily benefit, but we like to help them out," she said.
Many people come to the tent to prepare for their Thanksgiving feast and their canine family members are not forgotten. The back portion of the tent is mostly devoted to dogs, featuring Oma's Pride raw pet food products and merchandise.
Thanksgiving is the busiest time for Miller Foods, but the year-round business also sees a surge of people coming to get specialty items like turkey, shrimp, tenderloin and ham around Christmastime and for Easter.
"It kind of kick starts the holiday," Frank said. "It's really uplifting. People are happy. Thanksgiving is a very happy type of holiday."
The tent is open until 2 p.m. and Miller Foods will be closed on Thanksgiving. Miller Foods is located at 308 Arch Rd. in Avon and you can call 860-673-6454 for more information or visit http://millerfoodsonline.com.