I like "Applebee's" restaurants... good, reasonably priced food, with friendly servers and a comfortable atmosphere. Restaurants that get that combination right are likely to succeed, aren't they? Well Applebee's has, and they have the "Goodwill" thing nailed too. Let me tell you more-
A year ago or so one of my Medics informed us his kidneys had failed and he was undergoing dialysis. A devout Christian, one of his Sisters in his congregation was a good DNA match and had agreed to give "Joe" one of her kidneys. (Doesn't the selflessnes of that act blow you away?!!)
Joe began to do lots of fundraising stuff to raise money to cover costs not covered by insurance. He did all the things you normally hear about... auctions, etc., but there was one thing he did that surprised me... an "All you can eat pancake breakfast at 'Applebee's'". The restaurant opened early... 8 A.M., and allowed his Church to come in and take the place over. I don't know the full details, but members of the congregation waited and bussed tables while the restaurant provided all the pancakes, sausage or bacon, orange juice and coffee I could embarrass myself eating, for a cost of less than $10. The place was packed and was a successful fundraiser for Joe.
I was impressed with the number of congregants helping my friend, and I was surprised the restaurant would expose themselves to this kind of risk... many of Joe's Brothers and Sisters in Christ were youngsters... some servers looked to be 12 or 13 years old.
Wednesday night, after our niece's visitation, we went to Applebee's in Hugetown to eat. A sign next to the front door announced they'd be offering free lunch or dinner to Veterans and active duty and retired military folks tomorrow, Veteran's Day. So on the drive home from Hugetown yesterday Sara Jean and I stopped at an Applebee's near a big military facility to take advantage of their generosity. The place was PACKED with people and it was fun looking around, picking out the Veterans, trying to figure out which war they might have served in and what branch of service they were members of. (A truck right at the front door had a beautiful custom paint job with the "Eagle, Globe, and Anchor" covering the hood.)
It truly is a fraternity, this group of folks we found ourselves surrounded by...
Men and women... black, white, brown, yellow, and red... old and young...
All conversing with those near them, laughing, sharing stories.
It was such a neat experience!
Thank you Applebee's for the wonderful gesture, both yesterday and with "Joe's" fundraiser. Looking at the number of folks jamming your restaurant yesterday, I hope you made money. I have ABSOLUTELY NO DOUBT you made many friends that will darken your door in the future!