News brief for Oct. 5 |

News brief for Oct. 5

Restaurants help hurricane relief

Of the 668 Colorado restaurants participating in the Colorado Restaurant Association’s “Dine Out to Help Out” to aid hurricane victims, not one is from Craig.

Several area businesses already have done their part — holding their own versions of Dine Out within a week of the disaster.

The employees of Bad to the Bone raised more than $2,000 for the victims of Hurricane Katrina.

The kitchen and wait staff donated their wages, and owner Josh Lawson matched their donations.

“I’ve always tried to help out when something happens,” Lawson said.

Casa Loya also chipped in more than $500 for relief.

When Katrina hit the Gulf Coast, leaving thousands homeless and without food or water, Lawson said he felt obligated to help out.

“When you are doing well, it is time to give back,” Lawson said.

The Colorado Restaurant Association decided shortly after Hurricane Katrina hit to hold the fundraiser and waited until today to allow restaurants to decide whether to participate.

The same fundraiser netted $320,000 for the victims of the Sept. 11 attacks on the World Trade Center, and CRA spokeswoman Lynn Bronikowski expects this effort to exceed that.

“It’s an easy way for consumers to help hurricane relief efforts because they don’t have to do anything, just eat out,” she said.

Colorado’s bar, tavern and nightclub industry, and the Colorado Hotel Lodging Association are joining forces to stage a statewide hospitality-industry fundraiser today benefiting the victims of Katrina.

Today, restaurants participating in “Dine Out to Help Out;” bars, taverns and nightclubs participating in “Get Out to Help Out;” and Colorado Hotel Lodging Association members participating in “Sleep Out to Help Out” will donate at least 10 percent of their sales to hurricane relief efforts.

“The Oct. 5th statewide fundraiser is our hospitality industry’s way of helping the thousands of people — including many who work in hospitality and tourism jobs — devastated by Hurricane Katrina,” said Pete Meersman, chairman of the board of the Colorado Tourism Office and president and CEO of the Colorado Restaurant Association.

The effort is a simple way for patrons to give to Hurricane Katrina relief efforts.They simply have to go out and enjoy themselves at participating establishments, and the businesses do the giving by committing at least 10 percent of sales today.

Participating restaurants, bars, taverns, nightclubs, hotels and lodging establishments will be listed on
At the Colorado Hotel Lodging Association, phones have been ringing off the hook with inquiries about helping out, but also with offers to house evacuees from New Orleans, said Ilene Kamsler, president of the Colorado Hotel Lodging Association.

Although Dine Out/Get Out/Sleep Out to Help Out are asking participants to donate a minimum of 10 percent of sales that day, many will donate considerably higher percentages, and they will collect additional donations from patrons and employees.

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