'Peaceful Picnic' welcomes homeless to celebrate 4th of July at Pere Marquette Park

MILWAUKEE -- While many will fire up the grill on the 4th of July, others in the Milwaukee area are not as fortunate. But thanks to a local organization, they had just as much of a fun-filled holiday.

Peaceful Picnic at Pere Marquette Park

Those who are homeless got the chance to celebrate at what is called the "Peaceful Picnic" at Pere Marquette Park -- thanks to the MacCanon Brown Homeless Sanctuary. They enjoyed a free meal and a positive family atmosphere that included entertainment, games with prizes and even activities for children.

"They are happy they have someone who cares for them," said Bertha Brown, one of those who attended the event.

"With this kind of celebration of America, who is at the table? Everyone should be at the table," said Sr. MacCanon Brown.

Monday's celebration welcomed anyone with nowhere else to go.

Peaceful Picnic at Pere Marquette Park

"A lot of times, you wake up and don't have anything to eat -- especially on the 4th of July. A lot of the meal-sites are closed and everything. It's a big help for sisters to come out and spread the love," said Larry Rayford, who took part in this event.

Clothing was distributed along with fresh produce and other food as well.

"We give people the tool box, of all kinds of services and linkages in order to advance in their situations," said Sr. Brown.

On a helpful note, Veterans' Outreach was be available to provide access to medical professionals and links to other assistance.

Peaceful Picnic at Pere Marquette Park

Again, this event was sponsored by the MacCanon Brown Homeless Sanctuary -- which is based in Milwaukee's Amani neighborhood. The organization offers a safe space where homeless and at-risk people can partake in daily activities -- all while receiving financial coaching and other assistance.

The event at Pere Marquette Park runs until 4:00 p.m. Monday, July 4th.