Despite pandemic restrictions that made Family Place’s annual fundraising lunch primarily a take-out affair, the restaurant’s staff and Huntsville residents stepped up to help their fellow citizens.
Owners Jenny Spring and Oliver Wolfe ran the take-out fundraiser, which was held on Dec. 2, through both lunch and dinner this year. It raised $10,510 through both meal purchases—all of the proceeds from which went to the cause—as well as additional donations made by patrons. The funds were donated to Salvation Army Huntsville today.
“Wow!” was Major Neil Evenden’s response when he heard the total. He and his wife Merilee joined the Salvation Army Huntsville this year and have just been introduced to the generosity of the community.
“This is fabulous,” he said, adding that the funds will be used to purchase fresh items like fruit, vegetables, eggs, meat, and bread for the organization’s monthly food hampers. “This will go along way to helping us be successful with that.”
Spring said it was an extremely busy day. “I knew it was going to be very successful this year, because this year more than ever we really need to be supporting people in need…it was really nice to see so much support. And a huge thanks to our staff. It was nice of them to all help out.”
This fundraising tradition began more than 50 years ago when a group of businessmen hosted an annual holiday lunch, asking for donations in support of the Salvation Army Toy Drive in exchange. It has grown over the years and changed locations many times—former restaurants Peter’s, The Sportsman, The Station House, Jesters, and The Cottage have all been host—until Dino and Bessie Georgas of Family Place Restaurant took on planning and organizing the fundraiser. It has remained there for many years; new owners Jenny Spring and Oliver Wolfe have been happy to carry on since they purchased the restaurant in 2017.
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