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Peoples Restaurant opens its doors, heart to those in need of Christmas cheer

Posted at 5:09 PM, Dec 25, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-25 19:16:55-05

Good food and good company are just some of the things folks look forward on Christmas day.

Today, a local restaurant kept that in mind as it fed hundreds of people a hot meal at no cost to them.

Hundreds of people were in the holiday spirit at Peoples Restaurant today. For the fifth year in a row, restaurant staff served a Christmas meal, all because they want to give back to the community.

When the doors opened at 11 a.m., the restaurant served up generosity and a plate of warm food.

"We had turkey with gravy and mashed potatoes and carrots and iced tea," said Jesse Ruiz, who was one of Peoples' lunch guests. "And that's all we could ask for."

The staff fed about 500 people.

Many of those who ate currently are staying at the Good Samaritan Rescue Mission.

But for the holiday, they made the trip to the restaurant in Annaville.

"It feels good," said lunch guest Tony Sanborn. "I don't get out much, so it feels good to be around other people."

For most, the magic of Christmas is being surrounded by loved ones. But sometimes, that can be hard if you're homeless.

Mary Collins was eating at Peoples for Christmas, she said, because she doesn't have family to go home to right now.

But for Collins, and other homeless guests at Peoples today, a good meal brings a lot of joy when times are tough.

"It may not seem like a lot to a lot of people, but it brings people together," Ruiz said.

It also brings friends around who have turned into family.

"A lot of us are friends," Collins said. "And we consider each other family."

And sometimes it's not always about opening presents, but opening your heart for one another.

"We're really appreciative they take the time to take care of us and take care of the community," Ruiz said.

For everyone who ate at Peoples Restaurant, it was a holly, jolly Christmas, and they're hoping it was the same for you.

<"Merry Christmas to y'all. and I pray that y'all are happy together and have a Happy New Year," said lunch guest Dahlia Sedillo.