It takes 300 pounds of potatoes and another 200 pounds of turkey to feed the hungry at Ciancio’s. Or at least that’s how much food Don and his family plan on serving to the needy this year at their restaurant that overlooks the Hyland Hills Golf Course.
That’s not taking into consideration food to feed Don’s family, either. The Ciancio family, which has run the restaurant for the past dozen-plus years, began serving a community dinner for the needy a year ago—it’s a tradition of giving they hope to continue for years to come. Partnering with Have a Heart and Voices, the restaurant will dole out 700 meals to Westminster families in need this Thanksgiving. Meals will include turkey and the fixings. Don plans on spending the week leading up to Turkey Day preparing. Having grown up in the area, the timely endeavor of making such a large meal pro bono is well worth the effort.
Cuisine Scene: What drives your passion for giving back to the community?
Don Ciancio: Part of it is growing up in the community. It’s a place where I’ve lived my whole life, where my family was from, and all my brothers
and sisters have direct contact with. I think it’s important to give back to your community when you have the opportunity to do so.
CS: Why did you choose to use Thanksgiving for this charity dinner?
DC: I think my sister Donna said it a good way, “Thanksgiving is that time of year. It’s the time to give back.”
CS: What is your favorite Thanksgiving dish?
DC: I would say my wife’s dressing and maybe my wife’s dessert. It isn’t a traditional Thanksgiving dessert; it’s chocolate eclair cake.
CS: When you are not at Ciancio’s we’d find you…
DC: You may have to look at a couple places, maybe trying to exercise or watching my son play basketball—he’s a junior at Metro (State). Otherwise
I would be involved somewhere in the community, trying to help out.
CS: Where will you be spending your Thanksgiving?
DC: I will be here early morning and getting some cooking done. That afternoon I’m not sure, I will be with my immediate family, but I’m not sure where yet.
For information on Ciancio’s at Hyland Hills, 9650 N. Sheridan Blvd., Westminster, call 303.657.8870.