It’s as old school as it sounds. Calvary Baptist has had their annual Po’Mans Dinner for many years where you pay a flat fee and eat to your heart’s content. It’s not a banquet with all the pomp and circumstance, so after a requisite welcome and someone blessing the food, it’s time to grub.
I was told the Po’Man Dinner is to serve as a reminder of the types of foods poor people ate in earlier generations. By no means does that mean the food isn’t good, though.
The event is staged by the men of Calvary as a fund raiser and it always generates a large number of people ready to eat.
All the food is homemade and this year it included: fried chicken, fried fish, ham, neck bones, pig’s feet, mac & cheese, rice, sweet potatoes, potato salad, black eyed pies, some kinda okra, tomato and succotash mix that probably has a name but I don’t know what it is, string beans, greens that have been collared, cornbread, fatback, sweet tea, bread pudding, pound cake, peach cobbler, carrot cake, chocolate cake, and something else I probably forgot.
It was funny watching the people manage their food. Some of the seasoned professionals knew to use two plates at the buffet line, not for support, but to fill two plates of food since you couldn’t get it all on one plate. A couple people who wanted to take a plate (or two or three) home just snatched the aluminum foil right off the hot trays on the buffet table (I guess they figured the tray was empty so why waste that good foil). My favorite move was from a lady who pulled two smooth pieces of shiny foil out of her purse to wrap up a couple plates, then went back in her purse for the plastic grocery bag to carry the plates in. She was my MVP of the afternoon.
The Po’Mans Dinner is a great concept. I wish there was a portion of the program where they talk about how important these foods are to our Black legacy. And, I wish this type of event occurred more than once a year at more than one place.
This event proves that folks love to eat good food in a good atmosphere around good people. And, by the looks of things, the men of Calvary made some good money for their fund raiser.