Thanksgiving Baskets - Goodman Community Center

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Thanksgiving Baskets

TBaskets 2017 credit Laura Zastrow 262018 Thanksgiving Basket Drive

For the past 30 years, GCC’s Thanksgiving Basket Drive has become a tradition, with many long-serving staff, volunteers and their children returning year after year. It takes a village to complete all the tasks associated with providing 3,500 Dane County families with groceries for a home-cooked holiday meal — we're so thankful so many choose to give others a Thanksgiving they'll want to remember. Read below to see how you can get involved.

What's in a basket?

Thanksgiving Baskets include all the ingredients necessary to make a home-cooked holiday meal. Items include: frozen turkey (10-12 pounds), stuffing, gravy, cranberry sauce, canned fruit, canned vegetables, mac and cheese, broth, dinner rolls, milk, butter, eggs, onions, potatoes, carrots, pumpkin pie and ice cream.

» Items in bold indicate those needed for donation.

Give Money

Your financial gift helps us purchase turkeys and perishable items such as milk, eggs and butter. Money also helps us buy in bulk at discounted rates —  effectively making a dollar stretch much further. To give, simply click the button below and note "Thanksgiving Baskets" in the giving preferences line.

Give Now

Give Food

Could you help feed 3,500 Dane County families by hosting a food drive? We'd love to know about your drive so we can properly thank you — please fill out the food drive form below.

We have the following materials available to help make your food drive a sucess: 8.5x11 poster  |  11x17 poster  |  grocery list (3-up)  |  tips handout

Please download the files, print and distribute! If you'd rather pick up printed materials at the Center, you can note that in the food drive form.

Food Drive Form — coming soon!

This is not a registration form. Registration begins on October 15, 2018.  |  Este no es un formulario de registro. La inscripción comienza el 15 de octubre de 2018.

Delivering the Food

We can receive donations at any time, but if you are delivering a large quantity of food from a food drive, it helps if you can deliver it directly to our gym so we don’t have to move it again.

The gym will be open for donation drop-offs Wed., Nov. 14 through Mon., Nov. 19 (the earlier, the better)

  • Wednesday, Nov. 14 » 11 a.m.–5 p.m.
  • Thursday, Nov. 15 » 10 a.m.–8 p.m.
  • Friday, Nov. 16 » 1 p.m.–10 p.m.
  • Saturday-Monday, Nov. 17-19 » 9 a.m.–5 p.m.

Give Your Time

It takes a lot of volunteers to make Thanksgiving Baskets a success — we’d love to have you join us. Volunteers are needed for numerous tasks to ensure we can fill every basket. Starting Monday, Sept. 24 we'll have the volunteer opportunities listed here.

Thank you for any way you can help!

Thanksgiving Basket Registration

Registration dates: Monday, Oct. 15 – Friday, Oct. 26, 2018

How to Register: 

  • Online at starting Monday, Oct. 15
  • In person at the Goodman Community Center (149 Waubesa Street in Madison)
  • By phone 608.204.8018, Monday-Friday from 12:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. during registration dates
  • Please note, we will not be taking registration forms via fax

Only residents of Dane County, Wisconsin are eligible to receive baskets.

How do I get my basket?

After you register, you will receive a postcard in the mail. Postcards will arrive the week before basket pickup. You must bring this postcard with you to pick up your basket. Baskets will be picked up Saturday, November 17 through Monday, November 19. For more information, refer to the Frequently Asked Questions document at the link below.

FAQ 2018  |  FAQ in Spanish coming soon


If you have questions about the Thanksgiving Basket program, please contact Sam McDaniel at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 608-204-8049.

Sponsor the Thanksgiving Basket Drive

Are you ready to talk turkey? Because this fall, at least 3,500 low-income families in Dane County will be depending on us for their Thanksgiving meal. We can only achieve this because every year organizations like yours pull together and contribute tremendous amounts of food, money and time to help us organize it all. Give the gift of a holiday meal to families in our community and become a Thanksgiving Basket sponsor.

If your business or organizing is interested in sponsoring the Thanksgiving Basket Drive, contact Jon Lica, Corporate Giving Coordinator, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.or 608-204-8033.

Sponsorship Levels

Bucky Badgers Give BackBadgers Give Back

The Goodman Community Center's Thanksgiving Basket Drive is very thankful for our partnership with Wisconsin Badgers and the UW's Red and White Hunger Fight.

Wisconsin Athletics is proud to continue its strong tradition of fighting hunger in the community. Since its implementation eight years ago, the Red White Hunger Fight has represented the culmination of hundreds of individuals uniting to give back to the community.

This year, the Red White Hunger Fight has joined efforts with the Goodman Community Center to best serve the needs of our community and ensure that all families can enjoy a warm Thanksgiving meal. 

Read more on the Badgers Give Back involvement with Goodman's Thanksgiving Basket program. 

We are so thankful for community partners, businesses and organizations that host events to support our Thanksgiving Basket program. Check back soon for information on how to get involved!


Volunteers contributed hundreds of hours to make our Thanksgiving Basket Drive a success. Below are some photos taken during the packing and distribution of baskets in November 2017. A huge thanks to Laura Zastrow Photography for donating her time and talent to capture these images. 

View Full Gallery