BISMARCK, N.D. (KXNET) — Thanksgiving is a joyous invitation to shower the world with love and gratitude. Typically, families are crowding the living room and lining up in the kitchen — but there’s at least one big meal today that you might not know about. At Edgewood Village assisted living, residents are getting a chance to enjoy their own meals… among other things.

We spoke to three women at one of Edgewood’s Bismarck locations — Wanda Chernenko, Alice Kobilensky, and Esther Karch — who told us about the bond they all share. Although Alice and Esther come from the same place, all three of the friends met and formed a group here at the Assisted Living Facility. The rest, as they say, is history.

The friendship of these three women is especially important during times like Thanksgiving — when many may have the opportunity to get together with others, sometimes the best thing one can do is be there for those who don’t.”

“I was invited out with my family,” explains Chernenko, “but I chose to stay here. This becomes part of your family too.”

There are two Thanksgiving lunches for residents, family, and friends, to help bring the season’s spirit to the home. And despite these gestures of goodwill, the importance of having people nearby is the most important part of the Thanksgiving season.

Family…. not everyone here has family, explains Edgewood Marketing Assistant Kayla Woods. “Their families have gone to different states so they can’t come back for the holidays. This is the best generation we have that we’re taking care of, so it’s just really honorable and nice for us to give back to them in any way.”

The group of ladies haven’t just built a family through the home but also done so much together. In particular, they’ve cites games, art classes, bingo, and their personal favorite — being members of an 8-person bell choir known as the Edgewood Dingalings.

“We’re going on tour with our little bell choir,” says Kobilensky. “We’re going to the Edgewood in Mandan and the other one here in Bismarck.”

According to the Edgewood ladies, giving back and showing thanks is important because so many people do so for others in the cycle of life — and they may as well do their part to keep this cycle alive.