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Former Rays manager Joe Maddon brings Thanksmas meal back to Clearwater

Serving the homeless should be a year-round focus, not just around the holidays, Maddon says, and he’ll be providing meals in Clearwater on Thursday.
 
In this 2013 file photo, former Rays manager Joe Maddon talks with kids before passing out gifts during his annual Thanksmas dinner and gift giveaway at the Salvation Army's Sallie House shelter in St. Petersburg.
In this 2013 file photo, former Rays manager Joe Maddon talks with kids before passing out gifts during his annual Thanksmas dinner and gift giveaway at the Salvation Army's Sallie House shelter in St. Petersburg. [ Tampa Bay Times ]
Published Feb. 4

Former Rays manager Joe Maddon is bringing back his Thanksmas meal to help the homeless in Clearwater.

Maddon started the Thanksmas program in 2006 to raise awareness and has served thousands of meals at shelters in the Tampa Bay area, as well as subsequent managing stops in Chicago (Cubs) and southern California (Angels), and in his hometown of Hazleton, Pennsylvania.

Maddon will spend his 70th birthday on Thursday at the Homeless Empowerment Program in Clearwater, serving at 4 p.m.

“We are delighted to return to HEP,” Maddon said. “Thanksmas has traditionally been held between Thanksgiving and Christmas, but it is really more about reminding people that homelessness exists year-round, not just at the holidays.”

Since being fired by the Angels in June 2022, Maddon has released a book (The Book of Joe), hosts a podcast and provides regular commentary on MLB Network.

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