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Bend rapper gives back to C.O. community with fourth year of free Thanksgiving meals

(Update: adding video, comments from Bend rapper)

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) --J Meast, a Bend hip-hop artist, is hosting his fourth annual free Thanksgiving dinner event next month. He began the thanksgiving tradition after feeling he was in a good place in life to start giving back to the community and seeing so many who were without a home or other support.

“It broke my heart. It Just made me feel sad that people were out here, especially on the holidays, when it’s cold and snowing and they don’t have anywhere to go and eat,” Meast said Wednesday.

Shortly after moving to Central Oregon from California seven years ago, Meast says he noticed the number of homeless and decided providing a warm meal during the holidays would be a good way to help the community.

Meast pays for most of the supplies needed for the event and isn’t asking for donations, but if people are interested in helping, there are options.  

“It doesn’t have to be cash, it can be food. It’s going to be cold, you can bring blankets. You can bring whatever you feel people may need,” Meast said.

About 50 people are fed every year during his free holiday events, but wants to encourage as many people who can to stop by and enjoy a meal.

This year, the free Thanksgiving dinner will be at 3 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 25 at the Domino Room in downtown Bend. 

Meast said he’s made great memories when hosting these events, and recalls being able to help out someone in need with extra donation funds he received.

“What we wound up doing was is we gave it to a lady, because she said she had just lost her home. We gave her the rest of the donation money that we were going to give to the venue,” Meast said

Meast said being able to give back to the community is one of the best things about being a rapper.

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Leslie Cano

Leslie Cano is a multimedia journalist for NewsChannel 21. Learn more about Leslie here.



    1. I’m curious as to why you feel the need to ridicule this man when he is contributing something positive to his community. What have you done for your community lately?

      1. He’s not making fun of the “music rapper” he’s making fun of whomever wrote the story and called him a “music rapper”. I can’t believe someone had to explain that.

      2. 1. I’ve done more for the community in the last 25 years than this gentleman will do in his lifetime.
        2. I donate my time and tens of thousands of dollars each year to help people all over Central Oregon
        3. Calling someone a “music rapper” is hilarious, go away.

  1. This guy isn’t from Bend, didn’t grow up in Bend, didn’t go to high school here, and claims he still lives in Oakland, California. He’s promoting a show, come on guys!

    1. A good rule to follow is to assume best intentions on Meast’s part until there is solid evidence otherwise. Also, it’s quite possible he enjoys doing what he is doing, and if he is authentic, then I have no problem with the side benefit that it promotes who he is. People are complicated and often do things for multiple reasons and that’s okay. That said, there are opportunists who give superficially and then expect more in return, but I can’t see that angle here.

    2. This guy isn’t from Bend. So What?
      didn’t grow up in Bend So what?
      didn’t go to high school here….high school….high school?
      Jeez ya thats super important to who? Ninth graders?

      1. Never thought I would see Barney needing to share proof that rap is a thing! Regardless of liking or not like his music this is the kind of good work we should all want to get behind. Sharing food with each other is something we have done since the beginning of time. Not only is it a kind gesture it brings people together who might normally never interact. Good on him! I will be happy to chip in this year.

  2. Thank you Jay for your kind support for those in need. I have no idea why anyone here would say anything negative. What a beautiful gift for those who wouldn’t have a holiday meal this year otherwise. This sort of thing gives me faith that we aren’t completely lost and that there are still people who care.

  3. A man trying to feed the homeless and hungry, and on the holidays no less, and conservatives mock and ridicule him.

    Reminds me of that other guy that tried to feed the homeless and hungry a long time ago. Conservatives of his day mocked him too. Then crucified him.

      1. “REAL” CHRISTIAN’S SHOULD BE PROUD OF SOMEBODY DOING THIS!!!! I suspect he might be Jesus resurrected again…feeding the homeless and bringing the snakes out of the weeds you all live in so we all can see you.

      2. Trump4 ~ FYI Trump and Christianity do not belong in the same sentence. Talk about disrespectful. I’m surprised he (DT) can spell the word (Christian).

  4. I’ve worked w JMeast. Smart and compassionate man. He’s lost a few people in his life this past year and he’s out doing this for others? Amazing my friend! I feel bad that I’m not doing more to help our poor and hungry. What a great example! Keep pushing man and I just downloaded your songs btw 🙂

  5. Curious how his actions offend some. Why? Who cares where he’s from…what matters is what he’s doing.

    For those tossing out toxic words? What exactly are you doing to serve/ help others (aside from living in your glass house).

      1. This guy is so wonderful for doing this for our community. What are YOU doing to help? Go away if you can’t be nice.

        Thank you Jay! Our community is so grateful.

      2. Riiight! Donny Dump is a SHINING example of what young people should say and emulate right?

        Grabbing “Em By the *****” is a great exaple huh?

      3. So happy that they can see and hear such a great example of someone supporting a community. As to his “music”, let the kids figure out for themselves whether it’s garbage or not. Personally, I don’t consider rap to be music but to each their own.

      4. Seriously though man what are you doing to help the less fortunate who don’t have a hot meal especially on the holidays?
        please answer the question.
        Because admittedly I’m a lazy POS who should be doing more to help my community so I can definitely appreciate when somebody takes time to do something like this. I doubt they’re going to be playing rap the entire time genius.

  6. Seriously – a filler story about a kid donating meals and it turns into a referendum on Jesus and Trump? Please spend more time in nature and away from the echo chambers your chosen media. You’ll feel better for it – trust me.

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