MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The bitter cold is pushing many homeless people indoors.
To help make things a little extra merry on Christmas, those staying at the Simpson Shelter were treated to a hot breakfast at Our Kitchen restaurant in Minneapolis this morning.
About 60 people enjoyed the free meal. Volunteers were on hand to help serve and shuttle people from the shelter to the restaurant.
Organizers say options are key.
“The most important thing is having a choice of what to eat,” event organizer Brian Bozman said. “If you want steak and eggs, you can have it, if you want poached eggs, you can have it, and just having that choice, which a lot of folks who are homeless don’t have a choice on a daily basis of what they get to eat.”
This wasn’t the only restaurant giving back Monday. Old Chicago Pizza and Rock Bottom Restaurant and Brewery in Minneapolis were also serving free meals to the homeless.
Around 2,000 people enjoyed a warm meal, as well as a visit from Santa.
“People are coming in, they’re happy and they’re excited. I love seeing kids smiling,” operations manager Ben Zanetti said. “It’s probably the most incredible present that I would ever get back, giving back to the community, but seeing the kids, on their faces during Christmas Day.”
More than 240 volunteers joined restaurant employees to help make the day happen.