Rock star Jon Bon Jovi surprised a downtown Minneapolis shelter with a visit Thursday.
The Star tribune reported that Bon Jovi made a visit to People Serving People on 614 S. 3rd St. away from the cameras and spoke to reporters afterward referring to Larissa Thelmon, 28, a personal care assistant laid off just before Christmas.
Bon Jovi, who was between Xcel Center concerts on Wednesday and Thursday night, was on a fact-finding mission for the Jon Bon Jovi Soul Foundation, which has worked to tackle homelessness by building affordable housing, establishing community kitchens and cleaning up vacant lots in blighted neighborhoods the Star Tribune reported.
The singer also recently visited a shelter for alcoholics in Seattle and toured Skid Row in Los Angeles. He spotted People Serving People on a previous tour in the Twin Cities and knew he wanted to go back.
The Star Tribune also reported that Mimi Box, executive director of the Jon Bon Jovi Soul Foundation, who accompanied the rock star during Thursday's visit, said the foundation uses such stops to find out what has worked in some cities and can, in turn, be promoted elsewhere when awarding its grants.
Jim Minor, president of People Serving People, said Bon Jovi asked "a lot of good questions ... and knew what he was talking about." Asked whether the shelter might someday benefit from a grant, Minor added: "They haven't said a word. And we haven't said a word."