SOURCE: Chick-fil-A

Chick-fil-A

March 03, 2009 04:00 ET

Estero's First Stand-Alone Chick-fil-A Restaurant Opening March 5

Chick-fil-A Will Give Away Free Year's Supply to First 100 in Line and Create More Than 65 New Jobs

ESTERO, FL--(Marketwire - March 3, 2009) - Chick-fil-A® and its Eat Mor Chikin Cows will do their part to "boooost" and support the local economy with the opening of Estero's first stand-alone Chick-fil-A restaurant on March 5, giving away more than $26,000 in free food and creating more than 65 new jobs in the market.

Chick-fil-A will award a one-year supply of free Chick-fil-A Meals (52 certificates) to each of the first 100 adults in line, age 18 and older with identification, at the restaurant located at 21900 S. Tamiami Trail. The line officially begins forming up to 24 hours before the grand opening with the prizes being awarded March 5 sometime between 6 a.m. and 6:30 a.m. on Thursday. The restaurant will open for business immediately afterward.

With the country facing challenging economic times, Chick-fil-A continues to grow with plans to add 65 new stand-alone locations across the nation this year, creating more than 4,200 new jobs as well as providing a positive business impact in local communities.

"Chick-fil-A is grateful that we are in a position to continue our restaurant expansion," said Chick-fil-A Inc. President Dan Cathy, son of the chain's founder Truett Cathy. "Our dedicated franchised Operators across the chain continue to provide freshly prepared Chick-fil-A menu items and exemplary service that keep our raving fans dining with us. We don't take that for granted."

One way Chick-fil-A thanks its most loyal customers is by giving away more than $26,000 in free food as part of its "First 100" promotion at each grand opening. Chick-fil-A's raving fans often come from hours away, bringing tents, computers, furniture, games and even swimming pools to participate in the event which was launched more than five years ago to celebrate the opening of the chain's first stand-alone restaurant in Arizona.

"Since that first person pulled up in our parking lot in 2003 and asked where to get in line, we've given away more than $9.1 million in free Chick-fil-A food at our grand openings," said Cathy, who has camped out at more than 80 of the events across the country.

"We're flattered that our new customers think enough of our food and our service that they are willing to brave snow, wind, rain and triple-digit temperatures to help us celebrate each new Chick-fil-A opening year round. Plus, it's just lots of fun."

Frank Yurchak has been selected to operate the new Estero Chick-fil-A restaurant where he will employ approximately 65 team members. Yurchak began his career with Chick-fil-A in 1984 and most recently, was the franchisee at the Chick-fil-A at Lakeland Square Mall in Lakeland, Fla. He is married to Krista and they have three children who will be joining him in the business.

"Since its first chain restaurant opened more than 41 years ago, Chick-fil-A has set a high standard for its customers by providing freshly prepared food and personalized customer service," said Yurchak. "My team and I look forward to extending that legacy at our new Estero restaurant."

The Chick-fil-A on S. Tamiami Trail features a 4,227-square-foot interior that seats 134 and has warm colors and wood accents as well as an indoor play area for children that includes an interactive section for toddlers and a convenient, award-winning drive-thru. The new restaurant is open Monday through Saturday from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., serving a full breakfast menu until 10:30 a.m.

Aware of rising health concerns among the population and especially for children, Chick-fil-A has eliminated artificial trans fat from its entire menu and was among the first national quick-service restaurant chains to offer a complete menu -- from entrées down to condiments -- with zero grams of trans fat.

The menu at the new restaurant will include several enhancements rolled out chain-wide in 2008. These include a new Chick-fil-A Chargrilled and Fruit Salad with Harvest Nut Granola topping, Chick-fil-A Chick-n-Strips® that are 50 percent larger and are complemented by a new proprietary dipping sauce called Chick-fil-A Sauce™, a Chick-fil-A Chicken Salad Sandwich served on a new premium Wheatberry bread with green leaf lettuce, and Cool Wrap® selections that come in a new multi-grain flatbread.

A convenient way for Chick-fil-A customers to get their favorite Chick-fil-A menu items on the go at the new restaurant is the award-winning drive-thru. In 2008, Chick-fil-A was named Best Drive-Thru in America by QSR magazine for the fifth time. After a three-month industry study of 25 quick-service restaurants, Chick-fil-A topped the annual industry survey which measures order accuracy, speed of service, menu board appearance and speaker clarity.

About Chick-fil-A, Inc.

Truett Cathy developed the original Chick-fil-A boneless breast of chicken sandwich in his 24-hour Dwarf House® diner near Atlanta in the early 1960s, and he opened his first Chick-fil-A® restaurant in Atlanta's Greenbriar Mall in 1967. Since then, the chain has grown to include more than 1,425 locations in 38 states and Washington, D.C. In 2008 Chick-fil-A, Inc. reached more than $2.96 billion in sales, representing a 12.17 percent increase over the chain's 2007 overall sales performance, as well as a 4.59 percent same-store sales increase. It is the 41st consecutive year of sales growth for the chain, which plans to add 76 locations this year, including 64 stand-alone restaurants, two mall/retail outlets, and 10 licensed outlets in non-traditional locations, such as college campuses. This year, the chain also will spend millions of reinvestment dollars in existing business markets to remodel and re-design 65 stand-alone and shopping mall outlets across the country. More information about Chick-fil-A is available on the chain's websites, located at www.chick-fil-a.com, www.chick-fil-a.com/pressroom or www.truettcathy.com.

Contact Information