18th Annual Community Dinner Celebrates Diversity

The Carrboro Community Dinner Committee will host the 18th Annual Community Dinner on Sunday April 26. Each year the event brings hundreds together to share a meal and enjoy live music while celebrating diversity in the community.

According to Nerys Levy, co-chair of the committee, the purpose of the event is to sit down, dine and come together as a community while ignoring racial, ethnic, religious and economic barriers.

Nerys Levy
Nerys Levy hopes that the Community Dinner will continue to help Carrboro’s diverse community grow (Staff Picture by Niland Daly).


“You get a chance to sit down and talk with people you normally don’t see,” attendee Yvonne Cleveland said. “It is very well put together. It’s a huge event.”

Last year’s dinner was attended by nearly 650 people. According to Levy, the committee hopes to match or break that record at this year’s event.

All of Orange County is invited to attend the dinner and there is an emphasis on inclusion. Tickets are underwritten for those who can’t afford them and donations are encouraged. As suggested by the committee, $22.00 will feed a family of four.

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Spring Council trains volunteers at the Community Dinner in order to better serve the community (Staff picture by Niland Daly).

“Everybody is a guest for the day,” Levy said. “Everybody gives, and that is the beauty of this event.”

Mama Dip’s, the main provider of food for the event, has been involved with catering and volunteering since the first Community Dinner.

Other food donors include The Carolina Inn, Chapel Hill Kehillah, Chapel Hill Restaurant Group, Mediterranean Deli, Open Eye Café, and Patricia’s Kitchen.

“There is diversity [among] not only the people who attend but also [in] the entertainment,” said Spring Council, a manager at Mama Dip’s and a volunteer at the event.

The entertainment for this year’s event will include Brothaz Unique, The SoLiloQueen, The Chapel Hill UUkes and the co-ed a cappella group at Carrboro High School, Unnecessary Measures. Veteran announcer Ron Stutts, of WCHL and Chapelboro.com, will emcee the event.

“You will see a different culture on the stage and in the food. We bring everyone together for this experience,” Levy said.

The 2014 Annual Community Dinner was a winner of the National League of Cities Award for Cultural Diversity, and Levy hopes to continue the event’s tradition of excellence.

“It’s not just a dinner, its more than that,” she said.

Ticket are $8 for adults and $3 for children and are on sale at McDougle Middle School, Mama Dip’s, and other locations. The dinner will take place at 1 p.m. at the McDougle Middle School Cafeteria in Chapel Hill.

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Author of the article

Niland is a UNC-CH senior advertising major from Winston-Salem serving as social media editor of the Carrboro Commons.