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Annual "Tent City" celebration kicks off, benefiting the homeless

Downtown Toledo celebrates their annual Tent Fest weekend, kicking it off with a walk to end veteran homelessness (WNWO).

TOLEDO, Oh. (WNWO) -- Tent City is going on right now in downtown Toledo's Civic Center Mall, an annual event supporting the area homeless.

A walk to end veteran homelessness kicked off Tent City weekend in downtown Toledo. Throughout the weekend, they will be serving meals to the Tent City guests and will have plenty of live entertainment.

Rock singer John Mellencamp led the walk tonight, serving as the honorary mayor of Tent City. Local businesses and organizations across the city came out to show their support, including a group of locally retired firefighters.

"We'd like people to come out and support the vets, they need it,” says Richard Knight, with the Axemen Firefighters and Motorcycle Club. “They have to fight for their benefits. And that's something they deserve. They shouldn't have to fight for it. So we're here as a group to show support. We got a lot of vets in our chapter and that's what it's about."

"We are closing in on 1200 veterans and their families being housed through this program in the last three years and about nine states,” says Steve North, a 1Matters volunteer.

We spoke to people who with the help of the organization 1matters are no longer homeless.

"The lord blessed us with a house three years ago,” says Howard Carrington. “Through 1Matters, and we're still living in there now."

"Me and my husband [Howard] were at one time homeless,” says Nancy Carrington. “And without organizations like this, we would still be out there. There is hope and there is help. And god bless everyone out there that still struggles with that. Just never give up home. Never give up."

If you would like to stop by, make donations or help volunteer, services start back up here at Tent City at 7am.

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