Each year the cadets, family members, staff, and community members come together to celebrate the holidays during the Kenneth “Honey” Rubenstein Juvenile Center Annual Christmas Dinner and Program.
The cadets are active in the communities throughout Tucker County. The holiday dinner is an exhibition of all the groups and individuals that the cadets help. Representatives from the food pantry, the towns of Davis and Thomas, the three public schools, and elected officials all showed their support of the cadets’ work and growth.
Senators Dave Sypolt and Randy Smith as well as three directors of other state juvenile facilities attended this year’s event. “I think the most important thing about the event is the public comes in here and the community comes together. The individuals that are here in the Rubenstein center see the support they get from the community,” Senator Sypolt said.
“It’s important for the young men who are away from home for the Christmas season, and this brings the Christmas season to them,” Senator Smith said.
The food service staff concocted a spread of holiday staples for all to enjoy. The dinner included stuffing and turkey overlaid with gravy, green beans, rolls, baked ham with pineapple, pistachio green Watergate salad, and a cornucopia of desserts.
The food service staff began prepping for the dinner four days prior. Meanwhile, they still served three meals a day, and prepped for the holiday dinner in between.
After dinner was served, the program began with a reimagination of a Saturday Night Live skit. Christmas jokes delivered via puppet kept the program rolling. “What do you call people that are afraid of Santa?” the puppet quizzed. “Claus-trophobic.”
A medley of classic pop hits with inserted snowman lyrics came next. “I am a Snowman of Constant Sorrow,” “We Will Melt You,” “We Built this Snowman on Rock and Roll,” and “The Final Snowman” were among just a few of the hits cadets belted out.
The program ended with the classic “We Wish You a Merry Christmas” and a thank you from the Rubenstein staff.