We love living in Dayton, Ohio… a close knit community that pulls together to help their poor, impoverished, down trodden and those suffering temporary crises. Lots of companies give not only during “the season of giving,” but year round.
Today, Food Adventures takes time to recognize some of the Miami Valley eateries that we have witnessed supporting numerous charities, year after year after year. These are some of the biggest givers, the most generous folks, but it is certainly not the complete list. These eateries give not only in the Christmas season, but support many charities, year round.
Let us first preface this article by saying that many, many local restaurants support various causes and give willingly to numerous charities. We realize that some of these establishments may have been missed in this article, but that does not diminish their impact on the community.
Without further delay, Food Adventures presents a list of some of the biggest givers, in alphabetical order:
Here are the locally owned restaurants that go above and beyond when it comes to charitable generosity:
AMBER ROSE: From the Ronald McDonald charities, to local performing arts charities, Amber Rose has a firm involvement in the community. They even have hosted events for Catholic women’s charities, Dayton Children’s Hospital and more. You can see owner Joe Castellano and his workers at many charity and social events throughout the year. They support the community quietly and never toot their own horn. They have also catered for and supported charities like the Dayton International Peace Museum and the local Habitat for Humanity. The list goes on and on..
ARCHERS TAVERN: This popular Centerville restaurant also leads the food scene in community involvement. Owners Dan Apolito and Mike Fullenkamp dive in and help many local causes, donating lots of gift cards and money. Their philosophy is when you give, it comes back to you. Small charities like Hannah’s Treasure Chest or local Alzheimer associations, no charity is too small or too big, and Archer’s helps a lot of them. They even donate to local charities with their everyday menu “wing challenge.” On May 9th, 2016, Archer’s plans on leading a charity event, Pro-Am, with celebrities such as Ickey Woods called Dayton Fairways for Airways Celebrity Golf Classic at NCR Country Club , benefiting the Jovante Woods Foundation. Food Adventures will be involved as well… stay tuned…
BEAVERCREEK PIZZA DIVE: Each Monday evening, they host an all you can eat pizza buffet for charity. They call it their “Serve Pizza, Do Good,” project. We call it a delicious and filling way to support local causes. Food Adventures has volunteered as guest pizza makers in the past to raise money for local charities like the “Miami Valley Pit Crew” and “Dayton Daybreak.”
BILL’S DONUTS: The best donuts in the world are made by some of the most caring people in the world. Siblings Lisa and Jim Elam have carried on the family business and tradition of giving to the community. They have sponsored dozens of kids baseball teams over the decades, and soccer teams too. They support the Blue Star Moms and Mackenzies Lemonade Stand, and so many more charities. One of their biggest giving events is the annual Superhero 5k Donut Run for “A Special Wish Foundation.” Food Adventures and Dayton Most Metro are planning on being a part of this event every year.
BRIXX ICE CO.: Owner Chris Bhai is an unsung hero for Dayton charity involvement. He is another proprietor who flies under the radar, supporting local causes at every turn. Charities such as Dayton’s domestic violence resource called the Artemis Center, 5 for the kids, and the local Leukemia Lymphoma Society have benefited from their donations. Whether hosting events, or helping cater, Brixx is a solid supported of the Miami Valley. If we listed all the local non-profits that Brixx helps, we would be here all day.
CAKE, HOPE and LOVE: Mike and Shannon Teague, owners of this bakery, started with just one cake pan. Now their reach is across the Miami Valley. They have a“Wall of Hope” on their website, where each month, they help a new local charity. Hospice of Dayton and The Hope Foundation of Greater Dayton are just 2 of the area charities they have helped recently. They also make countless donations of free product to charities like www.nohungrykid.org. Another example of good people doing good things for the Dayton community.
CASSANOS: Cassano’s latest generation, Lora, Chip and Chris, have continued their father’s and grandfather’s legacy in recent years. That legacy is a continued tradition of community involvement and charity work. Their “Cassano’s Cares” Foundation” has recently given tens of thousands of dollars to the local Spinal Muscular Atrophy foundation or “SMA.” The corporation has also given to and supported Grandview Hospital’s “Victor J. Cassano Health Center.” Other medical donations recently have gone to the Kettering Medical Breast Evaluation Centers. The Cassano family has also given away thousands of pizzas to charity each year. It is great to see a Dayton icon so involved in future of the Gem City.
CHAPPY’S TAP HOUSE: These guys continually hold events through the year as on site fundraisers for like selling old glassware for the Leukemia Lyphoma Society or doing a pint night to fight Prostate Cancer. They are always seen supporting various charity events, and never stop giving to the local cause. Good food, good beer and a company that gives back to the community.
DUBLIN PUB: These guys always lend a hand when charity involvement is needed. From donations to collecting Toys for Tots, they make a “yoemans effort.” The support the Dayton United Rehabilitation Services charity, and have even held fundraisers for a competitor’s bar owner, who had cancer. Holy Trinity Church and Dayton’s Alzheimers Association have been some of the charities that benefited from previous St Patty’s Day parties. Thanks to restaurants like this, local charities get that shot in the arm they need to serve the Miami Valley.
FIFTH STREET BREWPUB: Talk about year round commitment, these guys offer a guest bartending spot every Monday for charity. They also donate a portion of that night’s food receipts to the cause of the week. This is one of the coolest business philosophies and ensures that every week, Dayton area residents can help their favorite charity. Did we mention the great venue, food and beer selection? This brewery also has some of the friendliest staff in town. Manager Dave Tickel and his crew are second to none.
FRESCO CATERING: Owner Jenn DiSanto is an amazing chef, a wonderful mom and a true inspiration. She used her own personal triumphs as motivation to host events to help causes like the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society of Dayton. Jenn has organized some unforgettable charitable dinner events such as “Plating a Night of Hope.” She also volunteers at various local schools to teach cooking classes for kids. Chef Jenn is very active in the community and is always giving back. She regularly donates her time, talents and money to several local non-profit organizations, including breast cancer charities. She has inspired many through her successful fight with the disease. Being an animal lover, SICSA Pet Adoption Center is another charity close to her heart. Jenn has been a chef all over the world, and we are lucky this gem eventually landed in the Gem city.
GHOSTLIGHT COFFEE: Not many people are as involved in the Dayton community as owner Shane Anderson. He uses Ghostlight Coffee as a venue to showcase local artists and arts of all types. From hosting songwriter events that benefit the local Dayton Food Bank, serving up coffee at Masquerage, or providing a place for local charities to host their events, Ghostlight Coffee is a godsend to many who are fighting for a local cause. From music to poetry and everything in between. It seems as if we are seeing Ghostlight at about every charitable event, supporting causes in one way or another.
THE MEADOWLARK RESTAURANT: Chef and owner Elizabeth Wiley is a pillar of the community. Besides providing exceptional food at her restaurant, she is involved with countless local causes. She supports them with her time and money. For example, Chef Wiley judges the Springfield Food Truck Rally for charity. This benefits the Springfield Rotary Club’s charitable causes, including Services to People with Disabilities, Polio Plus and the International Project in Lesotho, Africa. Meadowlark is also a big supporter of Dayton Pride and the Greater Dayton LGBT Center championing the cause for equality, locally. Meadowlark’s chartible reach extends to other programs such as Dayton Public Radio’s Discover Classical, American Institute of Food & Wine, DaytonNightOut.com and so many others.
ONE BISTRO: This place promotes taking care of your neighbor. Dayton’s only “pay what you can afford” or “pay it forward” based restaurant, it is charitable in it’s nature. The staff is even made up with volunteers. You can volunteer to earn meals for yourself. Or you can volunteer as a donation of your time. Owners Robert and Kim Adamson business is driven by their faith in God and community involvement. We can think of no better cause than feeding the area’s hungry children and adults. One Bistro’s also donates to the area Red Cross’ Disaster Response Team.
SCRATCH CATERING: For years, Chef Matt Hayden has made terrific BBQ and gourmet meals. He has also donated to many area causes. From Dayton History events, to the Fleur’s Et Vin event for AIDS Resource Center Ohio. Scratch Food has left their imprint on the Dayton area, catering for many charity events. One such cause is the “Suzy Pender Memorial Fund,” which provides teddy bears to children at Miami Valley Hospital as a way to comfort them. Scratch Catering has provided the food for the Pender golf outing fundraiser for the past 15 years. Unprallelled generosity and dedication is what you find from the owners, here.
STONE HOUSE TAVERN: They are involved in many aspects supporting the Waynesville community. Stone House supports everything from kids athletic teams, to charitable gift card donations. They are currently partnering with Archers Tavern for the May 9th “Fairways for Airways” golf outing Pro-Am featuring sports stars like Ickey Woods. The event will benefit the Jovante Woods Foundation. We believe in supporting business like this that give back to Dayton in so many ways.
THE SUBMARINE HOUSE: Last year this restaurant donated over $15,000 to Children’s Hospital, at their “Super Duper Cheesesteak Challenge” event. Restaurant owners Jason and Brody Tanner, oversaw the event and check presentation to the hospital. This event is held annually and the crowds and donations have grown each year. Great grub, and a great cause, you haven’t been to a charity event until you’ve watched a fellow Daytonian wolf down a 16 inch sub in 2 minutes. But hey, “it’s for the kids.”
WHEAT PENNY OVEN & BAR: Chef Liz Valenti and Chef Elizabeth Wiley are known for their work and generosity at Meadowlark restaurant in the past. As Chef Liz branched out to run Wheat Penny, they have continued the tradition of giving. Upon their opening they hosted charity nights for The Artemis Center, SICSA Pet Adoption Center and The Food Bank of Dayton, respectively. Other charities supported in the past have been Yellow Springs Pride, GLSEN Dayton Chapter, and AIDS Resource Center Ohio, to name just a few. Not only is Dayton lucky to have such talented chefs, but we are lucky to have such generous supporters of various Miami Valley causes.
YOUNG’S JERSEY DAIRY: Yellow Spring’s favorite farm is big on charity. From a free Wool Gathering, to a Bike Tour for charity, that supports 4 charities, including United Rehabilitation Services of Dayton. They always seem to have something going on. Young’s even hosts a “Cheddar Challenge 5k” benefiting The Antioch University Midwest Scholarship Fund. All this, while continuing to serve some of the area’s most delicious ice cream.
ZOMBIE DOGZ: Local couple Lee and David VanArtsendalen are always giving back to the community. These owners of Zombie Dogz are always saying “yes” to favors, donations and appearances for good local causes. Lots of these causes involve animals and dogs. Like the “Furry Skurry 5k” for the Dayton Humane Society or the Dog Wash for the Battle Buddy Foundation which provides service dogs to veterans. Just some or their other fundraising appearances have included Harrison Township Trustees’ National Night Out against Crime, Kettering Funk Lab Dance Studio benefiting the dance team, AMVETS, Alex’s Lemonade Stand, Stonespring Transitional Care Center police fundraiser, a 5k benefit for Miami Valley Hospital’s Children Intensive Care Unit, Harrison’s Heroes foundationds benefit for the NICU unit at Dayton Children’s Hospital. They even make stops at local schools and churches. It is great to see this popular food vendor, with the most inventive and delicious hot dogs, supporting so many local causes.
Here are some of the Dayton area chain restaurants, that give the most locally:
BONEFISH: Quietly giving and supporting many charity events, we have noticed Bonefish’s involvement on the local level. They are a sponsor for a local golf outing for Hannah’s Treasure Chest. Other charities they support include Catholic Social Services, ARC Ohio’s Red Table Gala, and Life Essentials to name just a few. They also donate countless gift cards to local requests, and are always open to lending a hand.
BRAVO! CUCINA ITALIANO: Bravo will work with various local charities for “dine and donate” nights and give 10% of food revenue to the cause. They host such events as “Breakfast with Santa.” From this event, they culminate a winter clothing drive for local shelters and $1 from each buffet sale goes to charity.
BRIO TUSCAN GRILL: Brio hosts and donates food to many local events. For example The Greene Daybreak event, to benefit Dayton Daybreak. They also sponsor the “Derby Day Brunch” to benefit The Kettering Medical Center Foundation’s Women’s Wellness Fund. These are just some of the events they cater and support each year.
CITY BBQ: A regional chain out of Columbus, people really love their BBQ. We also love when the delicious food is catered to local charity events. City BBQ is at many of these outings. They also do a ton of internal donations to Veterans charities, Future Farmers of America (Ohio), Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, Local cancer organziations, and Food Rescues. They also offer 25% event donations to school and booster groups as well as charities.
FIREHOUSE SUBS: These guys are known for their charity mission statement. Their Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation donates money for equipment for local firefighters. In October 2015, they celebrated a donation of $39,000 to the Kettering and Fairborn Fire Departments. Since the Foundation’s inception, they have donated $650,000 to Ohio Fire Stations.
JERSEY MIKE’S SUBS: Ted Tolliver owns the local franchises and he gives back to the community with passion. He has supported United Rehabilitation Services of Dayton in the past. In fact, upon each store opening he offered 10,000 free subs for a $1 donation to URS. Also, each year, during the month of March, customers are invited to come in to their local Jersey Mike’s restaurant and make a donation to a local designated charity partner. The campaign culminates in Jersey Mike’s “Day of Giving, a nationwide event. This day 100 percent of the day’s sales are donated to each local charity partner. Since 2011, Jersey Mike’s has raised more than $8.3 million for charities throughout the country. Ted has continually supported the United Rehabilitation Services of Dayton as his partner charity.
LONGHORN STEAKHOUSE, MORAINE: From pancake breakfast benefits, to event donations, Longhorn is carrying on the tradition of the late manager, Bob Medlin, by continuing to donate to dozens of causes each year. If we listed all of the charities, it would run for pages. Dayton Hospice Walk, Shoes for the Shoeless and Brief Blessings, Back2Back Ministries, Big Brothers Big Sisters program of the Greater Miami Valley, Miracle League of Dayton are just of few of the dozens of causes they support.
Chef House, The Big Ragu and Hungry Jax are proud to give a shout out to these fine people of Dayton who are making a difference in everyday people’s lives. Food Adventures would also like to say “Thank You” to these organizations, and a thank you to Dayton Most Metro for giving us a vehicle to present our weekly food scoop. Make sure you support these eateries that support the community.
There you have it, our list of some of the most generous and charitable restaurants.
DID WE MISS ANYONE ?? IF SO, PLEASE COMMENT BELOW, TO MAKE US AWARE OF THE CHARITABLE ESTABLISHMENT.
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Happy New Year to you all !