Applebee's Raises $138,000 for V Foundation
The Apple Gold Group, a franchisee of Applebee's Neighborhood Grill and Bars, raised $138,495 for the V Foundation for Cancer Research during its sixth annual March fundraising campaign.
Since 2009, the Apple Gold Group team has raised more than $700,000 to help the V Foundation fund research for a cure, a news release said.
"We are extremely proud of our employees' efforts to raise funds for the V Foundation as it continues to make strides in cancer research," said Michael Olander, president and CEO of the Apple Gold Group. "This fundraiser would not be a success without the generosity of our guests and employees, and we are grateful for their support of this cause. Cancer has affected so many people in our communities, our state and our nation, and we are honored to support the V Foundation in its fight against cancer."
From March 7 through April 2, employees of the Apple Gold Group's 52 North Carolina Applebee's asked customers to donate $1 or more toward the V Foundation for Cancer Research. In return for their donation, they were given paper basketballs to personalize and hang in the restaurant.
In the spirit of the tournament season, customers were able to choose from several different basketballs representing Duke, UNC, N.C. State and other local universities. The basketballs were then displayed in the restaurant to encourage other customers to participate, sometimes even provoking a little friendly competition among supporters of the different schools to see who would donate the most.
In addition to the paper basketballs, the Apple Gold Group's employees organized other fundraising activities to supplement the basketball sales, including softball and corn hole tournaments and "Jimmy Jail," a mock jail cell in which the Apple Gold Group COO, Bob Frame, was "locked up" until he raised $2,000 in donations.
"We are honored and thankful for the commitment and passion of the Apple Gold Group's employees and guests," said Nick Valvano, CEO of the V Foundation for Cancer Research. "Their strong determination in the fight against cancer helps move us one step closer each year to finding a cure for this disease, and we are truly appreciative of their efforts."
The Apple Gold Group, one of the original five Applebee's franchisees, was founded in 1984 to develop and operate Applebee's restaurants in North Carolina, opening its first neighborhood grill and bar in North Carolina in 1985. Since then, the company has expanded its territory to include Oklahoma, Arkansas and, most recently, South Carolina. The Apple Gold Group currently operates 87 restaurants in these four states.
The V Foundation for Cancer Research was founded in 1993 by ESPN and the late Jim Valvano, legendary North Carolina State basketball coach and ESPN commentator. Since 1993, the Foundation has raised more than $120 million to fund cancer research grants nationwide.
It awards 100 percent of all direct cash donations and net proceeds of events directly to cancer research and related programs. Administrative and fundraising expenses are paid by the Foundation's endowment. The Foundation awards grants through a competitive awards process strictly supervised by a scientific advisory board.
Anyone who needs more information about the V Foundation or who wants to make a donation can visit www.jimmyv.org.
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