The Pay It Forward board located inside Lodge 43 Restaurant. Submitted photo

The Pay It Forward board located inside Lodge 43 Restaurant. Submitted photo

Lodge 43 Restaurant celebrates two years of giving during trying times

Proceeds from Burger of the Month support local

The challenges posed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic prompted Lodge 43 Restaurant to initiate monthly community donations through proceeds from sale of the Burger of the Month. Since its inception in January 2020, the initiative has supported over 15 local groups and organizations.

“We started this as a way to bring awareness to groups, charities, non-profits and individuals working hard in our community while also being able to create great local food. We were challenged quite a few times over the last 24 months with COVID restrictions and supply issues but we are so proud to say we’ve managed to donate over $8,000 back into our town, our neighbours and our future leaders,” said Heather Jones, co-owner for Lodge 43 Restaurant. “Giving is contagious and we love being a part of it,” she added.

The Burger of the Month initiative celebrated its completion of two years with a donation of $306.25 made to the Sylvan Lake Community Partners Association in early January.

“This is the first time Lodge 43 has done the Burger of the Month for Community Partners. We will be using the funds for helping Community Partners Association stay here in Sylvan to help those in need. Thank you to Lodge 43 for doing this fundraiser and to everyone who purchased the Burger of the month in December,” said Jen Baliant, Sylvan Lake Community Partners Association events coordinator.

Lodge 43 Restaurant chooses donation recipients based on the community’s needs at the time.

“On average, we sell 100 Burger of the Month each month and add to that sum our entire bottle recycling amount each month which usually totals just over $300,” said Jones.

The restaurant also offers a Pay it Forward initiative that anyone can donate to or use for themselves. A soft board hung inside the restaurant is for anyone to either use or create their own donation amount and type of person they would like it for.

“We have quite a few free meals for a veteran, bottle of wine for a teacher, poutine for an out-of-work teen, meal for a single parent or health care worker, even a four-pack of craft beer for a neighbour needing a smile,” said Jones.

Proceeds from Burger of the Month January sales will be donated to H.J. Cody High School’s drama class in support of the play “Clue.” The Ronald McDonald House has been chosen as the recipient of the February donation.

Jones invites community members to partake in restaurant initiatives and help support local.