LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - JD's Center of Hope is gearing up for its first community cook-off with the hope of bringing East Texans together.
The center's director Stephanie Olford said that this event has been planned for months.
"It's called October Fest and we're inviting all of the community to come out. It's free, fun and fellowship." Olford said.
Approximately two hundred people are expected to turn out at the JD Center of Hope parking lot for a fun afternoon of activities.
"We're going to be playing games; we're going to be having a good time. Nothing costs, everything is free. Hot dogs, hamburgers, we're going to have baked beans, potato salad. We're just going to enjoy ourselves." Olford said.
The center went through a name change years ago after funds ran out under the old name and others started jumping ship except for one dedicated person close to the cause.
"Everybody gave up but master Olford, which they call him JD Olford, he decided to keep it going and he began to pray and not give up." Olford said.
After JD Olford passed away the organization renamed the building to honor his dedication to the cause.
"We just put a new face on it and continued the work and even made it greater." Olford said.
Since then the organization has started working with other local business in the area to help promote greater community outreach.
The U.S. Post office located on John Redditt Dr. in Lufkin has donated to the JD Center of Hope for years and now they're contributing to this week's big community cookout as well.
Post office branch union president MARK Dixon said it's good to give back to the people they see on a daily basis on the job.
"We just felt like it was good opportunity for us to give back the community. We've worked with the health center before; they're always one of the food banks that we give food to in May during our annual food drive." Dixon said.
The cookout is open to anyone and everyone with the hope of bringing people closer together.
"It doesn't matter what state you're in, it doesn't matter what predicament or what barriers you have. It's all about enjoying life and enjoying each other." Olford said.