Despite COVID-19 pandemic, Turkey cooking tradition continues at Cacia's Bakery in South Philadelphia

Beccah Hendrickson Image
Thursday, November 26, 2020
A South Philadelphia Thanksgiving tradition continues, despite the pandemic
A South Philadelphia Thanksgiving tradition continues, despite the pandemic.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- While many Thanksgiving plans had to change, the plan for the main course stayed on track for 74 families in Philadelphia.

"Since like the beginning of October, I've been getting phone calls asking if we're still doing it," said Joe Cacia, whose great-grandfather founded Cacia's Bakery in South Philadelphia.

For decades, the bakery has offered the neighborhood to cook their turkeys in its brick oven, built 50 years ago. The family says the secret is, their oven locks in the turkey's moisture.

"It must be very good, right? If they are willing to come in the middle of the pandemic to get their turkey cooked here," said Cacia.

Neighbors lined up to have their turkey's cooked at Cacia's Bakery in South Philadelphia Thanksgiving morning.

Veronica and Anthony Reel of Germantown were first in line at 4 a.m. They say they have watched this tradition for years on Action News and had to try it for themselves.

"Early bird catches the worm and we're going to enjoy this turkey today," said Reel.

The process was already pandemic friendly. One person is allowed in the bakery at a time. They drop of their turkey, take a number and come back 5 hours later.

"A lot of people always have done it, like a few of my neighbors and stuff, so I tried it and it just tastes delicious," said Marion Daccelli of South Philadelphia, who said she was happy the tradition is going on despite COVID-19.

The Cacias said they are happy to provide the service this year, especially to make the holiday feel normal for some people and to also make the block smell like a Thanksgiving dinner.