Patterico's Pontifications

11/11/2009

A Salute to Applebee’s

Filed under: General — DRJ @ 7:51 pm



[Guest post by DRJ]

Several commenters in the Veterans Day post mentioned that Applebee’s restaurants offered free meals to veterans and military personnel today. Here’s the rest of the story:

“The veterans’ meals program was pioneered at a handful of Applebee’s on the East Coast in 2008, focusing on locations near military bases, [Applebee’s Vice President of Marketing Joseph] Herrera recalled.

“The response was so overwhelming, we decided to extend it to the entire nation,” he said. “We’re expecting a big turnout.”

When queried why a restaurant chain should make such a large commitment, Herrera seriously answered with a question of his own.

“Why shouldn’t we?” he rhetorically asked. “These men and women are fighting and dying for our country. They’ve fought for our country. They’re making our neighborhoods safe to live in and protecting our freedoms as a democratic people.

“This is a small opportunity to thank them for their sacrifice and service,” Herrera stressed. “Veterans Day is a perfect day to honor them.”

Well done, Applebee’s.

— DRJ

NOTE: A valued reader points out that McCormick and Shmick’s Seafood Restaurants also offers a Veterans’ Appreciation Day. Kudos to these folks as well.

12 Responses to “A Salute to Applebee’s”

  1. I ran over to Applebee’s for lunch to try out their Veteran’s Day promotion. The food was very good and the service was appreciative despite the crowd. There was a 90-minute wait for a table, so I sat and ate at the bar with no wait. Six entrees to choose from and everybody seemed to enjoy their food. It was a full meal too, I was stuffed. No strings or hidden fees. They even let people make substitutions like with the regular menu. I saw several folks get fully-loaded baked potatoes instead of the regular mashed potatoes and that wasn’t part of the menu. They also had obviously scheduled extra staff and everybody was hustling to make it as nice as possible for the customers.

    We don’t eat out often but we’ll be going back soon and mentioning how much their promotion influenced us to come back. What was really impressive is that they didn’t promote themselves as being generous and treated all the veterans as special. It was as gracious and tasteful an event as I’ve ever seen from any organization, including some from on-post when I was still active duty.

    Stashiu3 (44da70)

  2. Stash, that rocks. I love when an offer to vets turns out to be a bona fide gift, and not some lousy strings attached insult.

    I didn’t eat at Applebee’s, and I haven’t in years, and I absolutely will take my wife there this weekend. Why not? Even if it’s a completely cynical marketing choice, they are right to be good to our vets to curry favor from our people.

    Dustin (bb61e3)

  3. I readily admit I was cynical in my expectations and really looked for their “hook”. Everyone there was completely sincere and the veterans I spoke with had a great time. Complete strangers were discussing their service, thanking each other, and shaking hands as they left. There were vets from Korea all the way up to current active duty in uniform mixing together. The staff didn’t say anything in self-promotion, just thanked everyone for their service.

    Stashiu3 (44da70)

  4. I avoid national chain restaurants like the plague, but I will be taking Clan JD to Applebee’s for dinner tomorrow.

    Off-topic – If Barcky really did reject all of the Afghan proposals, dither is no longer an appropriate word. What would be more appropriate?

    JD (b32fa4)

  5. JD, I get the impression Obama is throwing out trial balloons about Afghanistan. Last week he was going to give our troops all the support they needed. Now, he wants a committee to tell him when we will retreat or something. He’s not ready for this kinda of leadership decision.

    He has to jump to a conclusion on Afghanistan… either he’s in it to win it, or he has to find a way to get us out of there with minimized loss of face. It’s not the kind of problem that you can reach an objective result on. That’s why this ‘president’ thing is not a gift to give to the most ‘historical’ candidate. It’s a responsibility to our veterans. Obama’s still deciding because he’s still looking for the answer to be given to him by his circle of ass covering bums.

    JD, the words you are looking for are ‘shrinking from duty’.

    Dustin (bb61e3)

  6. here you can buy Applebee’s gift cards for Kwanzaa! I’m gonna get one for my sister and that guy.

    There’s no Applebees in my zone here.

    happyfeet (b919e7)

  7. the incredible shrinking little president man. Can he get any more smaller? You betcha!

    happyfeet (b919e7)

  8. no Applebee’s in my hood, so it wasn’t an option. no money for Mc&S this year, so that wasn’t up either.

    i ate a can of chili cold for lunch, with lots of Tabasco and cheese spread and water to drink….. call it simulated C-Rats.

    there was better food available, but it was good to have a reminder of the good old days.

    redc1c4 (fb8750)

  9. Stashiu3, I’m so happy you had such a great meal at Applebee’s. I’m going to email and thank them for such generosity toward our veterans. I really hope other establishments will follow suit. My dad and brother, both vets in different states but in similar small towns sans Applebee’s, enjoyed the pancake breakfasts provided by their local American Legion halls.

    Dana (e9ba20)

  10. Dustin – For the most part, I agree. I would just question that there is not an objectively right answer. If you are committed to the goal of actual victory, there are objective steps one can take to do so, something that Barcky seems intent on ignoring or at the very minimum, minimizing.

    JD (06f82d)

  11. Comment by redc1c4 — 11/11/2009 @ 8:53 pm

    Oh no. Well I’m sure if any fellow commenters had been in your area, surely you would have been treated to a good and well deserved meal.

    Dana (e9ba20)

  12. Went to Applebee’s yesterday. Had a nice meal. As a former restaurant worker as well as a veteran, I appreciate their gesture. I hope that the money that I spent on the extras does their bottom line some good. The next time I decide to “break my diet,” Applebee’s will be my choice. BTW, our local place was filled with veterans and their families. Applebee’s staff were really rushed but very professional. As a former waiter, I could appreciate their service. Left a nice tip for the waitress.

    Longwalker (4e0dda)


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