Cancelled California Wedding Leads To Feast For Homeless By Ditched Bride’s Family

Tara Dodrill - Author

Oct. 19 2015, Updated 12:02 p.m. ET

A cancelled California wedding turned into an extravagant feast for the homeless. After the nuptials were called off at the last minute, the family of the bride decided to invite the Sacramento homeless to what would have been a $35,000 wedding reception.

Kari Duane, the mother of the bride, said the family decided to turn the cancelled wedding reception into a once in a lifetime meal for the homeless of Sacramento, Fox News reports. The meal was held at the Citizen Hotel, one of the city’s most luxurious venues, on Saturday.

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On Monday Duane’s 27-year-old daughter, Quinn, called to tell her that she and her fiance had decided not to go through with the wedding. The fiance had reportedly cancelled the plans to wed. Not long after the phone call revealing that a knot would not be tied on Saturday, the bride’s family decided to host the feast for the homeless. The decision to turn the non-refundable event reservations into a gesture of kindness for the less fortunate was a rewarding experience for the family.

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“Even though my husband and I were feeling very sad for our daughter, it was heartwarming to see so many people be there and enjoy a meal,” Kari Duane added. “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.”

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Duane said the family of the bride had already paid for the reception at the Citizen Hotel. The event was intended to host 120 guests. Approximately 90 homeless people, including grandparents and entire families with newborns, went to the upscale hotel to dine on the meal catered for the wedding reception.

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

The menu included appetizers, salad, gnocchi, salmon, and even tri-tip. Some of the homeless attendees, appreciative of the opportunity, dressed up for the special occasion.

Erika Craycraft, her husband, and five children attended the Sacramento feast for the homeless.

“To lose out on something so important to yourself and then give it to someone else is really giving, really kind,” Craycraft said during an interview with local reporters from KCRA-TV.

Because part of the non-refundable wedding activities included a honeymoon trip, the mother and former bride-to-bride hopped on a plane to Belize on Sunday.

“I hope that when she looks back at this, she knows she was doing something good with a bad situation,” Duane noted.

“This is not coming out of our kitchen. We love our chef Leo, but he wouldn’t be preparing nothing like this,” homeless mother Tamara Dotson said when comparing the four-star meal from the Citizen Hotel’s The Grange restaurant with the food served at the shelter

Duane said that the first homeless diner arrived a half an hour before the would-be reception was scheduled to start. The woman lives in a shelter with other elderly women who are reportedly too old to work yet too poor to afford rent. The mother of the bride said that when the woman walked in and they chatted, she felt that if the she was the only person to show up, the homeless feast was still worth it.

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