Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

November 20, 2013

Mayasari to hold free-will donation Thanksgiving dinner

By Amanda Browning Daily News
Greensburg Daily News

---- — GREENSBURG – Mayasari “Maya” Effendi, owner of Mayasari Indonesian Grill, will be hosting a free-will donation traditional Thanksgiving dinner for the people of Greensburg from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 28.

All money raised from the meal will be used to benefit Edelweiss House and the Greensburg Community Bread of Life. Maya and her husband, Richard Mays, know the people who run Edelweiss House and believe strongly in their mission, as well as the mission of the Bread of Life to feed the hungry.

Maya said Thanksgiving is a very special holiday to her. When she moved to America from Indonesia with her daughter, Noviyanti, she knew no one and was set to spend the holiday alone in an unfamiliar country. However, she met the Fogles, who insisted that she and her daughter celebrate Thanksgiving with their family. That kindness is one Maya says she will never forget. She spent several holidays with the Fogles before she met Richard and started a family with him. Maya added that while Christmas is celebrated around the world, Thanksgiving is an American tradition that will always hold a special place in her heart.

Maya and Richard said they are both deeply grateful for the support the restaurant has received from the Greensburg community. They want to hold the meal on Thanksgiving as a way to express their gratitude and give back to the people of Greensburg. Maya said her restaurant couldn’t exist without the amazing support of the locals.

“I would love to have a lot of people. It’s an honor for me to cook food and have the community enjoy it,” Maya said.

Everything served at the meal will be homemade by Maya and the Mayasari staff. There will be eight turkeys, one of which will be made as turkey curry for those who wish to stray a bit from the traditional Thanksgiving meal. There will also be mashed potatoes, homemade rolls, corn, salad, biscuits, mango tea or coffee and dessert, in both gluten and gluten-free varieties.

“All the food will be made by hand. We could buy it in a store, but it wouldn’t mean the same,” Maya said. “We are shredding the turkeys and have many volunteers to help with cooking.”

Maya said the kindness of the Fogle family made a big difference to her when she was new to America and now that she has a restaurant, she wants to have her whole family, friends and customers together for one big meal and good company. Maya said she particularly wants to invite anyone who may be alone for the holidays and let them know there is a place to go where they will be warmly welcomed.

According to Maya, as soon as she and Richard began talking about holding the free-will donation Thanksgiving meal, they were flooded with people wanting to help. Maya said she has been blown away by the number of people volunteering their time or donating food to help bring the event to fruition. O’Mara Foods donated six turkeys and the other two were donated by April and Tom Buck.

“Thank you to all the volunteers that will be helping,” Maya said. “It means a lot to us to have the help and support.”

The Consulate General of Indonesia attending the grand opening ceremony at Mayasari in June, offering Maya the official support of her native country. Someone from the consulate’s office will be attending the Thanksgiving meal as well, but in an unofficial capacity, like family members supporting each other.

Reservations are not required for the meal, but with the expected amount of people attending, they are highly recommended and requested by Maya. Making a reservation will ensure that each family has enough time and space to enjoy their meal in comfort. Maya suggested planning 20 to 30 minutes time in which to eat. To make a reservation, please call 812-222-6292.

During this holiday season, Maya certainly will be thinking of the things she is grateful for, as well as the people who make it all possible.

“I’m so grateful for the opportunity to keep the restaurant open and serving the Greensburg community,” Maya said. “And for the employees I have helping.”

Maya and the entire Mayasari family wish to invite all those in need of a hot, home cooked Thanksgiving meal down to Mayasari Indonesian Grill on Nov. 28 to spend the holiday with new and old friends and most importantly, to not be alone.

Contact: Amanda Browning 812-663-3111 x7004 Amanda.browning@greensburgdailynews.com