My 4 year old daughter and her nanny visited your location at Tempe Marketplace in Tempe, Arizona. As she and her nanny waited for their meal, my daughter, Sophie, was playing waitress. A couple of your staff members noticed what she was playing and decided to absolutely make her day. They gave her a Red Robin apron, made her a nametag with her name on it, and gave her a bill holder; including a $1 tip. Even better than that, some of them sat down in an empty booth and let Sophie take their order, and entertained her while she waited for her food. Our nanny took some great pictures, and when she dropped my daughter off, she was over the moon talking about her experience at your restaurant. My ex-wife and I are extremely thankful for your staff going above and beyond to make our daughter enjoy her time at your restaurant, and I just wanted to make sure you knew about these tremendous gestures. You have won a guest for life in my daughter, and we will make sure to take her back!
I had arranged for a family to visit our Creekside restaurant for a much needed night out. It is a family of five and their youngest is a 4-year-old boy who is suffering from brain cancer and has been given only a short time to live. However, on the day of the visit, I was informed that little Luke was getting too sick to travel from their home in Cameron Park all the way to Roseville, as being in the car for that long creates a lot of discomfort and pain.
Not to give up on their night out, I called the team at Folsom to see if they could make this happen for the family. Without even a blink of an eye or a second thought, Chris, the manager on duty, jumped into action and, in true Red Robin spirit, went above and beyond for the family. When the family arrived at the restaurant, their table was ready and the Team was ready to go into action. Chris, another manager on duty, not only made sure that the tables were ready, but that a Team Member could jump into the Red suit and pay a special visit to Luke. Weak from treatment, Luke hasn’t even been able to force a smile in weeks. When Red came to the table, mom and dad were shocked when Luke looked up and showed Red a great big smile. I can’t tell you how much it meant to a mom and dad to see their son smile for the first time in a long time. For a family dealing with such a tragedy and not knowing how long they will be able to spend with their sweet 4-year-old boy, having a night out and being taken care of in such a great way was amazing.
Thank you Team Folsom! A special thank you to managers– Chris, Chris; Nicole for being a spectacular server; and Vanessa for being Red; and to the whole team who brought a smile to Luke’s face. I can’t begin to tell all of you how much it meant to a family in need. Luke’s mom, Jennifer, told me, “Tonight is a memory I will cherish forever.”
Thousand Oaks, CA
The Thousand Oaks Team was approached with an opportunity to host a Make A Wish lunch for Cecilia, a 12-year-old battling leukemia. The team raised more than $200 to provide her with a table full of decorations, CDs, cupcakes, and a cake, and the lunch was a hit! We received the following comment from the family.
I am so grateful to you and the entire crew for all you did for Cecilia. What a wonderful experience! The kids talked about it the rest of the day. I can't thank you enough.
My house had just burned down when we went to Red Robin. The staff was over-the-top kind to my daughter and me. Our server, Jessie, took a collection from the whole staff and she ran next door to Safeway and bought a teddy bear, bag of chocolates and a $50 American Express gift card! She called my daughter over and gave it to her. She came back to the table crying and showed me what they gave her, and I started crying, too! I could not believe their kindness. To top it off, the manager on duty, Dimitry, bought our dinner. I thanked him and he said, "Please don't worry about it. We are happy to help." I also talked to the General Manager, Eric, and he said the same thing. I have worked in the food industry for 12 years and have never met a staff as exceptional as this one!
We received a phone call from a gentleman named Ken, who is the family friend of a young lady named Sammy. In speaking with Ken, we learned that Sammy was diagnosed with a terminal form of bone cancer. Unfortunately, we also found out that doctors feared that Sammy may not make it to her 16th birthday. The purpose of Ken's call was to see if Sammy could be granted a special birthday wish, which was to be the very first guest ever at the newest Red Robin in her hometown. He explained that Red Robin was Sammy's favorite restaurant and it had always been her dream to be the very first guest at a Red Robin. As fate would have it, Sammy's 16th birthday was the first day of our Sneak Previews prior to the Grand Opening. Team Woodland decided to make this wish come true.
Kim and her new management team planned the most spectacular birthday party anyone has ever seen. Team Members joined together to ensure Sammy would not only be the first guest, but that her 16th birthday would be the most memorable. We learned that Sammy's favorite color was hot pink, her favorite animals were zebras, and that her favorite artist is Eminem. Because of her diagnosis, there was a fear that this day might not happen. It was our goal to give Sammy something to look forward to. We decided that Red needed to make a special appearance at her home and personally hand her a custom made invitation, along with a Red Robin letterman's jacket, and invite her over for her birthday. Needless to say, Sammy was a bit surprised to see Red and Kim show up at her house! The glow in her eyes was the first sign of hope her mother had seen in her daughter in a very long time. Red invited Sammy and 30 of her closest family members and friends to Red Robin for her birthday.
Sammy showed up and was escorted in by a standing ovation of Red Robin Team Members, as the very first guest ever at the Woodland Red Robin. Her tables were decorated in hot pink, surrounded by pink balloons, a zebra pattern rug, presents and cards from Team Members, and even a custom made blanket in honor of her birthday. As the first tickets were rung in, Heart of House Team Members were chanting Sammy's name and wished her a happy birthday from the cook's line. The very first official red basket came out and was delivered to Sammy. After lunch, approximately 50 Team Members brought out a cake and sang Happy Birthday to Sammy the Red Robin way. The smile on her face stretched across cheek to cheek as she blew out the candles. I was given the honor to stand up and address the crowd of Sammy's Dream Team to deliver one more present that only Red Robin could give. Team Woodland gave Sammy her very own booth! She was presented a plaque that read, "This Booth is Dedicated to Sammy April 21, 2011." That plaque is now a permanent fixture. It will forever be Sammy's booth.
There was not a dry eye in the entire restaurant! Actually, that's not entirely true. Sammy's eyes were not full of tears, they were full of life. In all my years, I have never seen the amount of joy and excitement as I saw in Sammy's eyes. It was truly inspirational and it was a moment that Sammy, nor her friends, her family and Team Woodland will ever forget.
Coeur d'Alene, ID
This morning I got a call from a woman that I have been mentoring. She is a single mom and struggles a lot juggling her kids, work and school. Her apartment caught fire last night and she and her two kids were devastated. I called work and asked Jason, the morning Manager on Duty, if I could take the morning off so I could help her. Without hesitating, he got my shift covered with no problem. While I was out helping her, I managed to round up about four guys to help salvage some of her things and put them in storage. Around 1 p.m. I called Red Robin and asked the afternoon Manager on Duty, Alicia, if Red Robin could give these guys some cheeseburgers while they were helping her. She didn't even hesitate to say yes. I knew I could count on Red Robin to help me with this. We got a temporary place for my friend and her two daughters to live and are working on getting them new clothes and furniture while their apartment gets remodeled.