The Longest Table Helps Support L’Arche Boston North’s Fifth Haverhill Home, Opening This Year

L’Arche Boston North’s 2019 Longest Table celebration on Haverhill’s Wingate Street, downtown. (Photograph courtesy of G’s Restaurant.)

The “Longest Table,” L’Arche Boston North’s annual dining experience, sold out in a half hour, but its long-lasting impact is the planned opening of the group’s fifth home in Haverhill.

Taking place this year along the Rep. Brian S. Dempsey Boardwalk in downtown Haverhill, the event kicks off Haverhill’s Restaurant Week. L’Arche Boston North Executive Director Jennifer Matthews recently appeared on WHAV’s morning program to explain the larger picture.

“We see it as an opportunity for us to share our mission with the greater community. For those who don’t know, L’Arche is a place of belonging for people with, and without, intellectual disabilities. We’re an international organization. There are 150 L’Arche communities in 37 different countries, so you’re lucky enough to have a L’Arche community in Haverhill. We are lucky enough to call Haverhill our home. We’re the only L’Arche community in the New England-area. There are 20 L’Arche communities in the United States,” Matthews noted.

The Longest Table takes place Thursday, Aug. 18, and includes live music and food and drinks served by a number of Haverhill restaurants, who have use of the Lupoli Culinary Center at The Heights. Even though the event is sold out, there is still a call for volunteers. Those interested may email [email protected].

Matthews says The Longest Table was born out of the organization’s mission.

“Anybody who’s ever interacted with L’Arche, whether you’re interested in learning more, you want to work us, you want to be on the board of directors, you want to volunteer for L’Arche, we’ve always invited you to our homes for dinner. So, the idea for the longest table came with the spirit of wanting to invite the community to our table,” she said.

L’Arche Boston North recently purchased its fifth home in Haverhill, and Matthews hopes to open it by the end of the year.

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