BINGHAMTON, NY (WIVT/WBGH) – Veterans and their families were invited to enjoy a free Thanksgiving meal one week before the holiday.

Clear Path for Veterans hosted a Thanksgiving lunch for veterans at the American Legion Post 1645 in Binghamton.

The meal is completely free, and includes a full Thanksgiving spread. This year, the event served more than 200 people from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The Regional Manager at Clear Path for Veterans, Jonathan Wanglund says that his team has to start prepping for the event a year in advance.

The organization’s executive chef is on site making and serving the food hot and fresh out of the oven.

Regional Manager at Clear Path For Veterans, Jonathan Wanglund says, “Times get tough around the holidays for everybody. This is an event, all of our events, that we put on in the community here are always free of charge to everybody. So, the free makes it easier for people to come out. That they don’t have to worry about any financial expense. Our organization and our county covers the cost of everything for this. So, its a way for everybody to know that they can come out, have a delicious meal, and its not going to cost them one dime.”

Wanglund says that the event is a great opportunity for people to connect and share time together before the busy holiday season.

He says that at today’s event, veterans came from as far as Delaware and Chenango Counties.