Ribbon Cutting set for Chic-fil-A; Free Chick-fil-A For A Year Awarded to First 100 Adults In Line At New Chick-fil-A Restaurant
Posted 10 - 09 - 2008
Ribbon Cutting set for 10 a.m., Thursday, Oct. 30 at new Chic-fil-A, 2804 North Street. Public is invited to attend!

Nacogdoches' First Chick-fil-A Restaurant Opening Oct. 30;
Becomes Chain's Third In-Line in Texas and Seventh in Nation
Free Chick-fil-A For A Year Awarded to First 100 Adults In Line At New Chick-fil-A Restaurant


Chick-fil-A®, newly named best drive-thru in the country in a national industry study, will reward those willing to wait in line for the opening of Nacogdoches' first Chick-fil-A restaurant by giving away more than $26,000 in free Chick-fil-A food to the first 100 adults in line that morning.

A one-year supply of free Chick-fil-A Meals (52 coupons) will be awarded to each of the first 100 adults, age 18 and older with identification, at the new stand-alone restaurant located at 2804 North St. The line can begin forming up to 24 hours prior to the opening, with the prizes being given away on Oct. 30 between 5:30 a.m. and 6 a.m. The restaurant will open immediately after the awarding of the coupons.

Launched in 2003 to mark the opening of the chain’s first stand-alone restaurant in Arizona, the First 100 Fans promotion continues to draw Chick-fil-A raving fans from all over the country. Armed with tents, computers, games and even swimming pools, campers turn the grand opening event into an all-night tailgate party.

“When we started the First 100 Fans promotion we were stunned when someone arrived 18 hours in advance and asked where he could wait in line,” said Chick-fil-A, Inc. President Dan Cathy, who has camped out at dozens of openings. “Now five years later, we have given away more than $8.5 million in free Chick-fil-A food across the country to raving fans who have braved snow, wind, rain and triple-digit temperatures to help us celebrate the opening of each new Chick-fil-A.”

Chick-fil-A was recently named Best Drive-Thru in America by QSR magazine after a three-month industry study of 25 quick-service restaurant chains in all 50 states. This is the fifth time Chick-fil-A has topped the annual industry survey which measures order accuracy, speed of service, menu board appearance and speaker clarity.

Chick-fil-A, which had the busiest drive-thru in the survey, topped the competition in the category consumers reporting caring about most – order accuracy. Helping Chick-fil-A get those orders correct was its speaker clarity which the study found to be best in the quick-service industry.

Overseeing the first drive-thru Chick-fil-A restaurant in Nacogdoches is Luke Wilbanks who has been selected as the franchised Operator of the new location. He will employ about 50 team members.

Wilbanks, who was raised in Diboll, started his career with Chick-fil-A at age 16 and worked at the Lufkin Mall location and was hired by Julie Walker, who now operates the Chick-fil-A restaurant at South Loop Crossing in Lufkin. While there, he earned two scholarships from the chain including the top scholarship honor awarded to employees -- the S. Truett Cathy Scholar Award in 2002.

He is transferring from the Chick-fil-A restaurant at Valley View Center in Dallas where he's been an Operator since 2007. Luke is married to Betsy and they have a new baby boy. Both Wilbanks are alumni of Stephen F. Austin State University in Nacogdoches where Chick-fil-A has a licensed location. Luke graduated Cum Laude in business administration and Betsy earned a Bachelor of Science in interior design.

“Since its first chain restaurant opened more than 40 years ago, Chick-fil-A has become synonymous with freshly prepared food and ‘my pleasure’ customer service,” said Wilbanks. “My team and I are eager to continue that legacy in Nacogdoches where I'm excited to return and raise my family.”

The new in-line restaurant, becoming the seventh in the country, reflects a unique design not found anywhere else in the chain. The 4,298-square-foot restaurant will seat 126 and has an indoor playground that includes an interactive area for toddlers. Warm color tones and wood accents compliment the look that includes barstool seating and larger table areas.

Chick-fil-A’s award-winning drive-thru offers a convenient way for Chick-fil-A customers to get their freshly prepared food on the go. 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.

The new Chick-fil-A restaurant will include several new menu enhancements rolled out chain wide in May. These include a new Chick-fil-A® Chargrilled and Fruit Salad with Harvest Nut Granola topping as well as the new Chick-fil-A Chick-n-Strips® that are 50 percent larger than the previous offerings and are complemented by a new proprietary dipping sauce called Chick-fil-A Sauce™. The Chick-fil-A® Chicken Salad Sandwich is now served on a new premium wheatberry bread with green leaf lettuce. The chain’s Cool Wraps selections now come in a new multi-grain flatbread.

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, opening his first Chick-fil-A restaurant in Atlanta’s Greenbriar Mall in 1967. The chain has grown to more than 1,409 locations in 37 states and Washington, D.C. Chick-fil-A, Inc. reached more than $2.64 billion in sales in 2007, resulting in a 16.09 percent increase over the chain’s 2006 performance and included an 8.47 percent same-store sales increase. It is the 40th consecutive year of sales growth for the chain which plans to add 88 locations this year, including 70 stand-alone restaurants. Information about Chick-fil-A is available on the chain’s websites, located at www.chick-fil-a.com or www.chick-fil-apressroom.com.
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