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St. Anthony’s Serves the Last Dinner in Its Original Dining Room After 61 Years and Over 38 Million Meals Consumed

Mayor Edwin Lee will preside over the last meal along with Giants President Larry Baer and Fire Chief Joanne Hayes-White

SAN FRANCISCO, Jan. 27, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The Last Dinner at St. Anthony’s marks the end of an era and a new beginning. For the first time in over a hundred years, the poor and hungry in San Francisco will no longer line the streets at Golden Gate and Jones. On this day, we gather together to honor the last meal served of 38 million and the final moment of over 2 million volunteer hours in a labor of love that has defined compassion and hope for San Franciscans.

The Last Dinner in St. Anthony’s Original Dining Room
Wednesday, February 1st
10 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. : Meal Service
12 p.m. : Press Conference with Mayor Lee & Giants President Larry Baer
45 Jones Street
San Francisco, CA 94102

The Mayor, along with local celebrities, will join St. Anthony’s Executive Director Shari Roeseler to honor the legacy of our past and unveil St. Anthony’s plans for the new century.

“As we honor this historic moment, we reflect on the legacy of Fr. Alfred Boeddeker, the Founder of St. Anthony Foundation. He conveyed a deep-seated practicality in his Franciscan vision. He transformed an old auto-repair shop into an open space of community and hope. This vision shines through the personal stories of each and every one of our guests, volunteers, and generous San Franciscans who make our work possible today,” said Roeseler.

This is an historic occasion for St. Anthony’s and for the city of St. Francis. St. Anthony’s Dining Room has been a refuge for the city’s most vulnerable citizens, and a portal of generosity to alleviate their struggles. The legacy of generosity on the corner of Golden Gate and Jones dates back to the chaotic aftermath of the 1906 earthquake, when Franciscan Friars first responded by passing out lunch bags from St. Boniface church. This work continued through the Great Depression and World War II. The call to feed the hungry inspired the transformation of an auto-body shop into the St. Anthony’s Dining Room, a civic anchor that has stood the test of time longer than any institution of its kind.

On October 4th, 1950, we opened St. Anthony’s Dining Room, expecting to serve 150 meals. 400 meals later, we closed our doors for the day. Since then, and for more than 61 years and 38 million meals, St. Anthony’s has been known as the Miracle on Jones Street. Now we have great plans to build The New St. Anthony’s Dining Room. The original Dining Room will come down and we hope to break ground for the new building this summer. Our celebration today invites all San Franciscans to help Hope Grow and Be Part of the Miracle that continues as we look to build The New St. Anthony’s Dining Room. Beginning on February 2nd, St. Anthony’s will serve meals from an interim Dining Room at 150 Golden Gate Avenue.

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SOURCE St. Anthony Foundation

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