Applebees opens after 10:30 a.m., but the Copperas Cove restaurant cooked for 38 people seated at 9 a.m. Saturday who ate pancakes, eggs, potatoes and sausage with members of Cove House.
Cove House is a local nonprofit that provides food and shelter for homeless people and the pre-lunch dinning was a fundraiser for the organization.
“We expected about 75 people to show up, but we may exceed that number,” said Stephanie Malley, a member of the Cove House board of directors. “Most of these people paid at the door. We initially sold 50 tickets.”
The breakfast tickets cost $8 and all the funds will go to the three shelters and the food banks operated by the nonprofit.
Cove House Executive Director Benjamin Tindall, said the organization spends an estimated $300 to $400 per week for food.
Applebees provided Cove House with information on organizing and advertising the fundraiser. Malley said she asked other restaurants to help, but Applebees was the most helpful.
“They were wonderful,” Malley said. “With all their help, it was very easy to setup the fundraiser.”
Most of the attendees enjoyed their breakfasts, laughing and cheating on their daily diets with family members.
“It was very good,” Preston Atkinson said. “Especially the sausage. I don’t usually get this at home.”
For others, it was an opportunity to learn about the organization and express their interest in volunteering.
“It’s great to see this organization taking the time to inform the homeless on where to get help,” Eric Braddock said.
Braddock is a Fort Hood soldier. When stationed in Hawaii, he and his wife volunteered at the homeless shelter.
“I think some people look down on the homeless,” Braddock said. “But you don’t know their story or how they got in that situation. They could be veterans,”