Canceled wedding turns into a banquet for homeless people


Quinn Duane called her mother to tell her that her
wedding wasn’t happening, that the groom-to-be got cold feet and woman
and her husband, who had spent $35,000 on the wedding reception, were
shocked. It was supposed to be a beautiful banquet at Sacramento’s
Citizen Hotel,
overlooking the city skyline, and the deposits had already been paid.
Instead of calling off their daughter’s wedding, the Duanes decided to
keep the reception. But it wasn’t the original 120 guests who came
Saturday – they invited a different group of guests – the Sacramento’s
homeless population – to a free, extravagant meal. The family said they
thought it was the right thing to do.

“When I found out on Monday that the wedding would not be taking place,
it just seemed like, of course, this would be something that we would do
to give back,” Kari Duane tells KCRA News.

The first to arrive was a woman who lives in a shelter for those who
can’t afford rent but are too old to work. Then, more came. The room
began to be filled with children, individuals, families, even newborns.
The menu included salad, cauliflower, gnocchi, salmon, and tri-tip,
similar to the food served at the hotel’s four-star restaurant, The
Grange. According to one homeless guest, it certainly beat the food
prepared at homeless shelters.

“I think it’s very generous actually to lose out on something so
important to yourself and then give it to someone else,” says Erika
Craycraft, a homeless woman who came with her husband and five children.

The meal was a joyful occasion from their typical endeavor to serve three meals a day.

“When you’re going through a hard time and a struggle, for you to get
out to do something different with your family, it’s really a blessing,”
Craycraft’s husband, Rashad Abdullah, says.  

Quinn Duane, the would-be bride, did not attend, instead opting to stay
home with her friends. On Sunday, she and her mother will go to Belize
on what would have been her honeymoon.


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