It was more than 50 years ago that the first Ponderosa Steakhouse opened in Kokomo, Indiana, on Plate Street. But it took only hours for all the Ponderosa Steakhouse owners in Indiana to come together to raise funds for the victims of the tornadoes that ripped through Central Indiana on Wednesday, August 24, devastating homes, businesses and daily lives. On Sunday, August 28, the 13 Ponderosa Steakhouse restaurants held a “Buy One, Give One” full-day fundraiser and raised $7,777.77 for the American Red Cross, by donating $1.00 for each entrée or buffet sold.
Eugene McGarvey, who has been with Ponderosa Steakhouse since the very beginning owns the Ponderosa Steakhouse in South Bend, is a resident of Kokomo, which experienced tremendous devastation from the tornadoes. On Friday, September 2, McCarthy presented the donation check to Kristina Chapman, Disaster Program Manager, American Red Cross, at the Kokomo Event Center, where the Red Cross still continues to work with families and individuals, who were impacted by the tornadoes.
“Our work continues and is possible thanks to the generosity of supporters like Ponderosa Steakhouse, who understand the meaning of neighbors helping neighbors,” said Chad Priest, regional CEO of the Indiana Region of the American Red Cross. “It is times like these that the community relies on the Red Cross, and the Red Cross is appreciative for the generous gift from Ponderosa Steakhouse in support of the work we do.”
“On behalf of our compassionate franchise-owners in Indiana, everyone within the Ponderosa Steakhouse community is honored to be able to help our neighbors in need,” said Tom Sacco, CEO, Homestyle Dining. “We wish everyone affected by the recent tornadoes our very best and hope that this donation to the American Red Cross will speed the recovery efforts.”
The participating Ponderosa Steakhouse restaurants were:
South Bend – 52627 State Route 933
Anderson – 5009 South Scatterfield Road
Auburn – 1130 West 7th Street
Princeton – 2020 West Broadway
Indianapolis – 5005 South Emerson Avenue
Plymouth – 2100 North Michigan Avenue
Vincennes – 2625 Hart Street
Greenfield – 1585 North State Street
Portland – 1002 North Meridian
Scottsburg – 1211 West McClain Avenue
Madison – 327 Cliff Drive
Goshen – 1919 Lincoln Way East
Washington – 5 Cumberland Drive
Funds were also raised at Bonanza Steak & BBQ in Seymour at 2046 E. Tipton Street.
Dallas, Texas-based Homestyle Dining LLC owns, operates and franchises family-focused restaurants throughout the United States and internationally under the Ponderosa Steakhouse and Bonanza Steakhouse brands, where guests enjoy flame-grilled steaks and entrees along with a high-quality buffet featuring an endless selection of salads, soups, appetizers, vegetables, and desserts at affordable prices. Homestyle Dining recently introduced Cole’s Backyard Grill, a truly unique experience around a rich, flavorful and creative American menu at fast casual pricing in an eclectic and comfortable environment plans to open up to 250 restaurants in the next five years. The new Bonanza Steak & BBQ, recently opened in Seymour, IN, is a full service, casual dining concept celebrating Bonanza’s American steakhouse heritage with its modernized menu including new authentic, Southern-style BBQ offerings, and an interior redesign around a butcher house theme. Plans call for 100 restaurant locations in the next five years.