Orange County News

15K gather for massive holiday feast at Honda Center

Thursday, November 22, 2012

A Thanksgiving celebration at the Honda Center in Anaheim brought more than 15,000 people together to share a meal.

It's the 26th year that La Casa Garcia Restaurant and the We Give Thanks Foundation have provided free meals to the needy on Thanksgiving Day.

"It really gives me a sad feeling in my heart when somebody doesn't have a place over their head and they don't have no food to eat," said Shirley Mann of Anaheim.

The free event ran from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. They served up nearly 700 turkeys, 100 pounds of gravy, 6,500 pounds of vegetables and 5,000 pies - the largest free Thanksgiving feast in Orange County.

Frank Garcia never thought his event would grow to be this big. He started feeding 3,000 people in front of his restaurant years ago and considers his partnership with the Honda Center and the city of Anaheim a blessing.

"It's a blessed day to thank God for a plate of food," said Frank Garcia, owner of La Casa Garcia Restaurant. "Like I say every year, if everyone gave a plate of food to their neighbor there would be no hunger in the world."

Despite plans to slow down and sell one of his restaurants to spend more time with his family, Garcia plans on taking part in this event for as long as he's alive.

"I'm going to die here," said Garcia, "These people need me."

The event is open to anyone who doesn't want to spend the holiday alone.

"This is my third year coming here because otherwise I'm alone" said Rita Corpin of Santa Ana. "I'm retired and coming here is like a big celebration."

(Copyright ©2014 KABC-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved.)

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charity, holiday, thanksgiving, orange county news
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