Taco John’s helps Dough 4 JoePublished 11:12am Thursday, June 20, 2013
Taco John’s owner Brian Fuder still remembers the kind attitude of one employee who worked his first job at the restaurant several years ago. Sadly, that employee is now gone, but Fuder wants to make sure his memory lives on through the community.
On Saturday, Taco John’s will host a fundraiser for Dough 4 Joe, an annual motorcycle run held in Elizabeth. The original event raised money for Joe Sampson, a former employee at Taco John’s who lost his battle to cancer in 2008, at the age of 27. Because Sampson’s step-mother is a long time employee, giving back means a lot for the restaurant and its staff.
“We’re ready for it to be extremely busy. We’re going to be staffed as much as we can, and serving as fast as we can,” Fuder said. “The staff loves the idea of being able to help. When it gets crazy, they love it. It’s a challenge to them.”
Between 11 a.m. and 7 p.m., the store will donate 25 percent of each sale to the Dough 4 Joe charity. Customers can also make donations of their own, and Fuder said their register systems will accept additional funds designated to the charity.
After the original run raised money for Sampson’s family and their medical expenses from Joe’s illness, an event has been held each year on the fourth Saturday in July to raise money for another family in need.
“We thought it would be a great organization because we’re excited by what they do for other families,” Fuder said. “We love to give back in any way we can. This way, we can pair up with our guests and get behind a good cause.”
If the day is a success, Fuder said he would like to see it become an annual event. Earlier this year, Taco John’s held a similar event for the Fergus Falls Marching Band when they raised money for their trip to the Inaugural Parade in Washington, D.C. The restaurant raised $2,000 that day, roughly split between sales and separate donations, so Fuder has reason to be optimistic.
Most importantly, Fuder wants the event to highlight an incredible person he was lucky to have known.
“Joe was willing to help out anyone at any time,” he said. “The organization fits him so perfectly. It’s just a great legacy.”