LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - From fresh cornbread to homemade macaroni and cheese, Big Mommas Soul Kitchen is a Louisville must.
The restaurant is gearing up for Christmas, but instead of trying to rake in the cash, they’re trying to serve a gift to the community.
Big Momma, who grew up in a family of 13, knows not everyone is lucky enough to have a hot meal on Christmas Day. So, once again, she’s on a mission to feed hundreds for free.
From top chefs to loyal customers, mouth-watering Southern staples like fried chicken, green beans and mac and cheese keep them coming to Big Momma’s Soul Kitchen near 45th and Broadway.
WAVE 3 News asked regular customer Mario Holbrook what’s so good about the food?
“Everything,” he said. “It makes me call her Big Momma, reminds me of my grandmother Big Momma.”
The ever-busy, effervescent Big Momma only has time for interviews while working.
“I enjoy work,” she said. “I don’t want to sit down. You sit down, you die.”
That makes sense considering how much is on her plate.
“Every year the numbers keep going up and up,” Momma’s daughter and restaurant manager Sheryl Fox said.
For the 12th year, the kitchen’s staff is out to prove its heart is bigger than its soul, making free dinner for anyone who shows up between 12 p.m. and 6 p.m. on Christmas Day.
“With the economy this year, we’re expecting more, of course,” Fox said.
The need is real; hundreds line up around the building last year for what’s become a Christmas tradition.
“When we was kids, people helped us, and I like to give back,” Big Momma said. “It’s a good feeling, a real good feeling.”
You don’t have to qualify, or fill out a form, just come hungry.
“Anybody who has a big appetite,” Fox said. “We want you to come by.”
The Big Mommas family has gotten bigger as Christmas volunteers keep coming back with friends and relatives. Somehow, it works, and it all makes sense when they hear lines like this from those standing in line.
“We don’t know where we would have eaten today,” Fox said of one customer she remembered.
Added Holbrook: “They get out here to feed the kids and the families and everything; it’s a beautiful thing.”
He said they’re serving up a big helping of love.
“We need a lot more of that, a whole lot more of that right there,” Holbrook said.
After serving the Christmas Day meals at the restaurant, volunteers will take some to area senior centers. Any food left over goes to local shelters.
The Christmas tradition relies on donations to keep the dinner going. You can stop by the restaurant to make a donation or you can call 502-772-9580 to donate or volunteer.