Routh played for about half an hour, earning a few dollars from those willing to slow down in cold weather.
But as he played, a group began to gather across the park, placing items on folding tables. After a few minutes, a woman from the group approached Routh.
Complimenting his guitar playing, she asked him if he would consider coming to the other side of the park to play for a group of homeless men and women. She, along with her ministry, provided the group with hot meals and blankets.
It was an immediate “yes” from Routh.
For over an hour, Routh not only performed for the band, but prayed for them.
When asked by people over for a meal why he was playing that night, Routh told them about Operation Red Sleigh.
Without hesitation, the pair reached into their pockets. One dropped his pennies into the bucket, while the other handed in $ 5.
Routh later called the experience “overwhelming.”
When one of the men started gushing over his love for the Trans-Siberian Orchestra and how excited he was to tell people about the Routh game, just that everything – the hours in the cold, the nap. money raised – “worth it”.