JEFFERSON PARISH, La. — While many people have spent the days leading up to Thanksgiving prepping, some groups in the area have spent months preparing. 1,000 turkeys are prepped, fried and distributed in what the Dawn Busters Kiwanis Club calls the World’s Largest Turkey Fry.
The event, which serves as a fundraiser started over 20 years ago, but on a much smaller scale.
“They started with 250 turkeys, took them a while, different set up, different everything. From that, when that club kind of folded, Dawn Busters took it over and it’s just been an amazing thing,” Marcel Lashover, a member of the Dawn Busters Kiwanis Club said.
It’s a collaborative effort between the Kiwanis Club and The Krewe of Carrolton, which fries the birds.
“It’s a long day most of the people rotate in,” Paul Cotaya, a member of the Krewe of Carrolton, said.
The process on the day of distribution is a well-oiled machine starting at 3 A.M., with a line that starts with prepping and injecting the turkeys, dropping it in a pot, keeping track of exactly when it needs to come out and hanging it to drip. From there, they are packaged and distributed.
“The temperatures a big key so we’re looking for something anywhere between 325 and 375, two to three minutes a pound,” Cotaya said.
While those involved say it’s a lot of work, they say it’s for a good cause. All the money raised goes towards the Kiwanis club’s community projects like reading programs.
“This is a labor of love, for the community but the community’s giving back to us so we can give back to the kids, look the kids are our future right?” Lashover said.
While it’s a labor of love, they also want to remind you that frying a turkey can be dangerous. Given that they’ve fried thousands of them, they’ve become experts. But, if you insist on frying a turkey on your own they say to make sure you’re at least 10 feet away from your house.
“Realize once it gets hot it expands a little so prepare ahead of time, try and keep track of the temperatures that’s really the big key. If it gets over 400 degrees that’s a major major fire hazard,” Cotaya said.
Next year you can let the Kiwanis Club and Krewe of Carrolton take care of your Thanksgiving turkey. They go on sale every year around the beginning of November and sell out quickly.