Glen Cove Man Opens Home On Thanksgiving So Others Aren't Alone

GLEN COVE, NY — Alex Kern knows what it’s like to be alone during the holidays, and he doesn’t mince words in describing that feeling.

“Being alone for the holidays can really suck and be quite depressing,” he wrote in a Facebook post Monday that was shared to a group of more than 11,400 neighbors.

Kern told Patch on Monday he spent a couple holidays alone after experiencing a hardship, and that’s why he’s opening his home this year to up to four complete strangers for Thanksgiving. They don’t have to bring anything, and there’s no dress code. They just have to come with a smile — and park in the driveway.

“Absolutely no parking in front of my house,” he said with a laugh. “I’ll get in big trouble for that. There’s plenty of room in my driveway.”

Reaction was swift after he put out the offer, gaining hundreds of likes and comments from neighbors within a couple hours. He hasn’t had any takers yet — save for close friends, but they don’t count. But this is the second time he’s opened his home during the holidays to those looking for a warm and loving home. In 2017, three people came to Kern’s Christmas dinner. One of them was an older neighbor he had known and who would’ve been alone that day. Two strangers also came, and the group spent a couple hours together talking and eating.

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For Kern, who owns a local construction company, extending his home is just his way to give a little back to the community.

“I’m grateful for a lot of things in my life,” he said. “So I want to give something back, and that’s my way of doing it.”

And while most people would be hesitant to share their home with strangers, especially on a major holiday, Kern told Patch on Monday that all are welcome, including people experiencing homelessness, as long as he doesn’t feel his family or well-being are in danger. And that’s not something he expects will happen.

“It’s an open invitation for those who have no place to go, nothing to do,” he said.

Kern said his kids and family are OK with sharing their home, too. Kern has a history of doing good in the community — he once drove a woman to a hospital during a snowstorm because she was having an asthma attack — so they weren’t shocked when he came up with the idea.

Those interested are asked to contact Kern ahead of time so he can plan and know how many people are coming. Dinner will include turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, a pasta dish and probably apple pie.

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