LRA, Commander’s Family of Restaurants & GNO Foundation Activate the Hurricane Harvey Hospitality Employee Relief Fund
The Louisiana Restaurant Association (LRA), in partnership with the Commander’s Family of Restaurants and the Greater New Orleans Foundation, has activated the Hurricane Harvey Hospitality Employee Relief Fund (HERF). The LRA uses its influence to help direct charitable contributions through its national and state restaurant association network and the nation’s restaurant industry. Harvey’s extensive rainfall and flooding, which has surpassed that of Hurricane Katrina, has made the LRA a go-to resource for recovery efforts following weather-related events such as Hurricanes Ike and Gustav and most recently, the August 2016 flooding in Baton Rouge.
“Our restaurant community immediately rallies to answer the call of those in need,” said Stan Harris, LRA President & CEO. “Unfortunately, our challenges with weather-related events have provided us the experience to aid those impacted by Hurricane Harvey. Helping direct money to get hospitality employees back on their feet and to work is critical for Houston’s recovery.”
Criteria is being established to award individual grants and the HERF will donate to restaurant and hotel workers who are in a position of hardship during the recovery period. The partnership will work with the Texas Restaurant Association to help award grants through its Greater Houston Restaurant Association.
“After Hurricane Katrina, the Houston community was there for New Orleans and we'll never forget it. Alex Brennan Martin, along with the LRA, started the New Orleans Hospitality Workers Disaster Relief Fund and it raised and distributed more than $1 million in small grants to help individuals in New Orleans. Today, we are returning the favor,” shared Ti Martin of Commander’s Family of Restaurants.
If you, or an organization you know, is looking to support our industry, please visit www.gnof.org/give-now/ and specify your donation is for the "Hurricane Harvey Hospitality Employee Relief Fund." If the donor prefers to send a check, please make it payable to the Greater New Orleans Foundation and mail it to 919 St. Charles Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70130.
The Louisiana Restaurant Association (LRA) Acadiana Chapter is excited to partner with the University of Louisiana at Lafayette Hospitality Management Program for the inaugural event, “Acadiana Food & Wine Soirée,” which will be held Wednesday, October 11, 2017 at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette Alumni House, 600 E. St. Mary Blvd. in Lafayette from 6-9 p.m.
Kicking off Lafayette’s annual “Festivals Acadiens et Créoles” weekend, Acadiana Food & Wine Soirée will have wine and tasty cuisine from 20 different area restaurants. There will be a commemorative wine glass for every guest, and the opportunity to purchase the featured bottles of wine onsite.
Open to the public, partygoers should bring their appetites, as they will be able to enjoy signature dishes from such restaurants as Bon Temps Grill, The Petroleum Club, POUR Restaurant & Bar, Romacelli Bistro e Vino and Zea Rotisserie & Grill, to name a few.
A portion of the proceeds from Acadiana Food & Wine Soirée will benefit the Louisiana Restaurant Association Education Foundation (LRAEF) and the University of Louisiana at Lafayette Hospitality Management Program. The LRAEF, in turn, will use monies raised to further promote the restaurant industry as a career choice through its restaurant management and culinary arts program, ProStart®, offered at eight Acadiana schools and its scholarship program.
Thank you to our Acadiana Food & Wine Soirée Sponsors: Waitr, Republic National Distributing Company, Romacelli Bistro e Vino, City Club at River Ranch and POUR Restaurant & Bar.
Tickets are available now at $75 per person. To purchase, visit www.eventbrite.com and search “Acadiana Food & Wine Soirée.” Tickets will be available at the door, unless the event sells out.
For more information about the event or sponsorships, contact LRA Chapter Member Services Coordinator Courtney Waguespack at firstname.lastname@example.org or (225) 328-2163.
The Louisiana Restaurant Association (LRA) is pleased to name Felton Jones of PJ’s Coffee in New Orleans a LRA Restaurant Legend. He was recognized at a special ceremony during PJ’s Coffee’s franchisee conference at the Royal Sonesta Hotel in New Orleans on August 24, 2017.
The Restaurant Legends Award recognizes the long-term dedication of employees of the restaurant industry, with 20 or more years of service at one establishment.
Felton is a New Orleans native, growing up in the city’s Ninth Ward. He graduated from St. Augustine High School and was a member of the school’s internationally famous marching band, performing in the Color Guard. During college at Xavier University in 1993, Jones got a part-time job at PJ’s, in the cold drip department. The process of selecting beans, roasting and making coffee intrigued Jones and he learned about the entire process, paying close attention to his mentor Phyllis Jordan, the founder of PJ’s.
In the years that followed, Jones became a customer service/route driver and then left his post at PJ’s in 1996 for another company, in order to expand his knowledge of coffee. He returned to PJ’s to become their Roastmaster in 1999. Jones is committed to sourcing and roasting the finest coffee for PJ’s customers. He frequently hosts classes and tours of PJ’s roasting facility, making the experience both informative and fun.
“Felton puts his heart and soul into the PJ’s Coffee brand so that it can be considered the best coffee in New Orleans,” said Alan Guilbeau, PJ’s Coffee’s Executive Vice President of Business Development. “Coworkers and customers alike know that his passion and knowledge of his craft are above and beyond expectation.”
The LRA Education Foundation (LRAEF) is currently accepting expressions of interest to be considered for nomination as an LRAEF Director. The term is for two years and would begin on January 1, 2018. Any replies will be reviewed by the LRAEF Nominating Committee, which in its sole discretion will review and present candidates to the LRAEF Board of Directors for its consideration at the November 12 annual meeting.
Directors are expected to attend all LRAEF Board and committee meetings, the LRAEF annual meeting, and the Louisiana ProStart Student Invitational and its related activities.
Should you have an interest or would like further information, please email Alison Greffenius, LRAEF Executive Director, no later than the close of business on Friday, September 15.
The Department of Homeland Security has asked us to provide the following announcements:
E-Verify system is experiencing an outage which is affecting some users ability to get into the system. No further information is available at this time.
The Louisiana Restaurant Association’s (LRA) Greater New Orleans Chapter, in partnership with the New Orleans Convention & Visitors Bureau, is excited to announce that its Restaurant Week New Orleans will be held September 11-17, 2017.
During this weeklong celebration of New Orleans cuisine, participating restaurants in the New Orleans metro area will offer special prix fixe menus. Restaurants will offer a two-course lunch for $20 or less, a three-course dinner for $39 or less and/or a three-course brunch for $39 or less.
Participating restaurants range from fine-dining establishments to neighborhood favorites. Discover new places and enjoy old favorites! To check out the restaurant list and menus, visit www.RestaurantWeekNewOrleans.com. Diners can make reservations through OpenTable; seats fill fast. Share your Restaurant Week New Orleans experiences on social media with the hashtag, #RestaurantWeekNOLA.
More than 100 participating restaurants (as of August 22, 2017):
A special thanks to 2017 Restaurant Week New Orleans sponsors:
Gold Plate Sponsor:
Silver Spoon Sponsor:
Friends of Restaurant Week New Orleans:
e Lt. Governor’s Tourism Summit is being held this week in New Orleans and is the largest educational opportunity held for Louisiana tourism professionals. The LRA GNO will host Lt. Governor Nungesser at its August meeting to receive an update (which will share next week) on the 2018 Louisiana Tourism Outlook. But for now, we’d like to share the latest Pick Your Passion commercials which focuses on Louisiana Outdoors with nods to food, music and our majestic landscapes.