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Holiday feast offers rare respite in LA

Nov. 22, 2006 at 9:24 PM

LOS ANGELES, Nov. 22 (UPI) -- Homeless people near the Los Angeles Mission were treated Wednesday to a free Thanksgiving dinner, served up by celebrities including Kirk and Anne Douglas.

The annual holiday dinner welcomed more than 3,000 homeless men, women and children who live on skid row, the mission said in a news release.

"Our outreach to the homeless community most often starts with emergency services like a hot meal or a warm, secure place to sleep," said Herb Smith, the head of the mission. "But that's just opening the door to the many services we provide to help people get off the streets and on their feet."

The mission served up 2,000 pounds of turkey, 800 pounds of vegetables, 3,000 dinner rolls and 750 pounds of garlic mashed potatoes.

The list of celebrity servers included TV personality Leeza Gibbons, actresses Minnie Driver and Dee Wallace, and Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.

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