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  • 24 Jul 2014 12:03 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    The hugs are free. The football? Not so much! Play fantasy football alongside current and former Atlanta baseball stars and legends! You can register online at:

    Enjoy a “Draft Day” experience from Turner Field featuring a live fantasy football draft and an evening of exclusive Atlanta baseball experiences!

    Draft Day: Friday, August 15, Turner Field, Atlanta
    Atlanta Baseball Players Scheduled to Participate*:
    • Freddie Freeman
    • Chris Johnson
    • Craig Kimbrel
    • Gavin Floyd
    • Gerald Laird
    Atlanta Legends Scheduled to Participate*:
    • John Smoltz
    Contribution Levels*:
    • $3,000 “Participant Level”– Includes one randomly assigned team in the Atlanta league and an invitation for you to attend the Draft Day experience at Turner Field. Your draft table and your conference will include at least one pro baseball player, assigned via lottery.
    • $4,000 “Co-Manager Level” – Includes the benefits above, plus you also get to bring one guest to attend the Draft Day experience with you. This is a great client entertainment opportunity, learn more.
    •  Corporate participation available - Contact Us for a special opportunity to secure all 11 teams in John Smoltz’s conference!
    Benefits Offered for Your Contribution:
    • Experience a live, moderated fantasy football draft with the participating baseball players and legends and other paid participants

      - Friday, August 15 in the 755 Club, Turner Field
      - Emceed by Joe Simpson
      - Additional appearances from other special guests
      Food and beverages during the draft
    • Photo opportunity
    • Autographed swag by all participating Atlanta baseball players (items provided by Freddie’s Free Hugs – No autographs allowed during the Event)
    • Behind the scenes tour of Turner Field
    • VIP access to batting practice
    • Tickets to the Oakland@Atlanta game that night
    •  PLUS weekly interaction and competition with Atlanta big leaguers throughout the fantasy football season and more chances to win other great prizes
    Proceeds from Freddie’s Free Hugs support:
    • Atlanta Community Food Bank
    • Salvation Army of Tustin Ranch, California
    • Atlanta Braves Foundation
    • The Big League Impact Basic Needs Initiative
    *Participants and scope of experience subject to change. See Terms of Service for more information.
  • 24 Jul 2014 9:07 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Atlanta, GA (July 22, 2014) – Jim Stacy, television host and owner of Pallookaville Fine Foods, will serve as the Master of Ceremonies at the 8th Annual Georgia Restaurant Association Crystal of Excellence (GRACE) Awards to be held on Sunday, November 2nd at the Foundry at Puritan Mill in Atlanta, Ga. The GRACE Awards recognize and pay tribute to the leaders who have made outstanding contributions to Georgia's restaurant industry and all finalists are peer nominated, which ensures that we honor the most deserving of our industry.

    Stacy is the host of the award-winning cable show “Get Delicious!,” which airs on Atlanta’s Public Broadcasting television station PBA 30, and also serves as co-host of “Deep Fried Masters” on Discovery Channel’s Destination America. Stacy has appeared on “The Tonight Show With Jay Leno” and is the owner of Palookaville Fine Foods in Avondale Estates, Ga. Stacy has five Emmys, three Telly Awards and a GABBY Award and is world famous for his corndogs.

    Previously, Stacy opened a restaurant in Athens, Ga. called The Downstairs, bartended at the internationally renowned Manhattan Café and bought the Star Community Bar in Little Five Points, which he sold to run the Starlight Drive-In Theatre (an Atlanta institution since 1949). He is currently Zagat rated and included in multiple “Best of” and “Top 10” lists.

    To learn more about the GRACE Awards, or purchase tickets, visit

    About the Georgia Restaurant Association
    The GRA’s mission is to serve as the voice for Georgia’s restaurants in Advocacy, Education and Awareness. The GRA is sanctioned by the National Restaurant Association (NRA) to operate Georgia’s only not-for-profit representing the state’s foodservice industry. The GRA serves as the unified voice for over 16,000 foodservice and drinking places in the state of Georgia with total sales in excess of $16.5 billion which provides more than 405,800 jobs. From large chains to start-ups, the GRA helps make Georgia a better place for restaurants to do business and helps make restaurants better for Georgia.

    About the GRACE Awards
    The GRACE Awards is the Georgia Restaurant Association’s (GRA) annual black-tie gala event honoring Georgia’s Restaurant Industry. The GRACE awards are peer-nominated and honor the top finalists in the following categories: Restaurateur of the Year, Industry Partner of the Year, Distinguished Service Award and the Innovator Award. The winners are announced at the event and are presented with crystal works of art created by renowned local artist Hans-Godo Frabel.
    A portion of the proceeds from this event will go to benefit the Atlanta Community Food Bank, whose mission is to fight hunger by engaging, educating and empowering the community.

    For more information, ticket reservations and/or sponsorship opportunities, visit the GRA website at For media inquiries, please contact Rachel Bell, marketing and communications manager, at (404) 467-9000 or

  • 23 Jul 2014 1:46 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The Georgia Restaurant Association is excited to announce a new partnership with Uber, a mobile app that allows you to request a ride at the tap of a button. It is our hope that this partnership will help bring more guests into our member restaurants, as well as provide a safe, reliable, and convenient trip to or from each of your establishments.

    What is Uber?
    Uber is a mobile app that connects riders to drivers at the tap of a button. In addition to being available in more than 150 cities and over 40 countries, uberX, UberBLACK, & UberSUV options are available to residents of Atlanta and many of the surrounding suburbs. Information about the rates in Atlanta and the most reliable coverage area can be found here:

    How to Use Uber

    ONE TAP TO RIDE - Uber uses your phone's GPS to detect your location and connects you with the nearest available driver. Get picked up anywhere - even if you don't know the exact address.

    RELIABLE PICKUPS - When you request a ride, we’ll find a driver and let you track their location on the map. Feel free to put away your phone – we’ll text you when your ride arrives. Your driver’s name and car details appear in the app, and you can message or call if you need to.

    CLEAR PRICING - View rates for your city in the app. You can also enter your pickup and drop-off locations to get a fare quote for your trip.

    CASHLESS & CONVENIENT - You don't need cash when you ride with Uber. Once you arrive at your destination, your fare is automatically charged to your credit card on file – no need to tip. We’ll also e-mail you a receipt.

    FEEDBACK MATTERS - Drivers not only meet Uber’s standards, they meet your standards. After your trip, you can rate your experience and leave additional feedback about your driver.

    SPLIT YOUR FARE - Simplify your life and your fractions. Invite your friends to split the fare. If your friends opt in, each person’s credit card will be charged equally. No more pay-me-backs or IOUs.

    New User Promotion
    Georgia Restaurant Association members are eligible to receive a free first ride up to $30.

    Sign up at or text GRA to 827-222 to get the app and your free first ride. In the Uber mobile app, use the promotional code GRA.

    How Can GRA Members Partner With Uber?
    Are you interested in partnering with Uber? As part of the relationship with the Georgia Restaurant Association, Uber is pleased to offer restaurants, bars, and hotels a number of benefits including free rides for first time Uber users.

    Email or for more information.
  • 21 Jul 2014 8:30 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Source: National Restaurant Association

    In August, the House of Representatives and Senate will head home for summer recess. It’s the time when legislators reconnect with their constituents by hosting town hall meetings and attending community events. Now is the perfect time for restaurateurs to have their voices heard by their Congressional representatives.

    Get involved this summer! Attend a town hall meeting. Introduce yourself to your elected officials at events. Invite them to tour your restaurant.

    Here are tips on how to talk to elected officials and some suggestions on restaurant-specific priorities to bring up.

    Keep it simple and short.
    Introduce yourself and your restaurant. State your position on an industry issue that matters to you, and ask what the lawmaker can do to help solve the problem. Be polite and thank him or her for meeting with you.

    Talk about your restaurant. Lawmakers want to hear about you and your business. Tell your story. How did you get started in the industry? What was your first job? How many people does your restaurant employ? How much tax revenue does your business generate? What are your biggest challenges? And most importantly, what can Congress do to help you?

    Priority issue: health care. The Affordable Care Act will have a particularly profound effect on restaurants because of the industry’s unique nature. It’s highly labor-intensive, with low profits per employee, significant numbers of part-time employees, and a young and mobile workforce. Ask lawmakers to support changes that would help you manage and comply with the requirements of the new law.
    • Define full-time as a 40-hour workweek. It’s currently 30 hours, but that doesn’t reflect employers’ workforce needs or employees’ desire for flexible hours.
    • Simplify and streamline employer reporting rules. Currently, the requirement is burdensome and offers no viable simplified options for businesses like restaurants.
    • Raise the threshold that determines which small business are treated as “large” under the law. The current definition (and calculation employers must perform each year to determine whether they’re considered large or small) places an undue burden on industries with large variable-hour workforces, such as restaurants.
    • Eliminate the auto-enrollment mandate, which could cause financial hardship for employees who don’t opt out by the law’s deadlines. The requirement is redundant, unnecessary and will be expensive and confusing for employers and employees.
    Priority issue: tax. One of the industry’s top asks to Congress is to extend tax provisions that expired at the end of 2013. Congress typically reauthorizes these “tax extenders” for just a year or two. The uncertainty makes it hard for restaurants to plan. Ask your lawmakers to provide restaurants with more tax certainty by making these three provisions permanent.
    Engage. After you connect with your senators and representatives, keep the conversation going on social media. Start by thanking them for their time via Facebook or Twitter.

    Learn more about all of the restaurant industry’s top issues.
  • 17 Jul 2014 3:43 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    National Restaurant Association

    (Washington, D.C.) The National Restaurant Association today applauded members of the House of Representatives for passing H.R. 4719, “America Gives More Act of 2014.” The bipartisan legislation combines five bills designed to increase charitable giving to individuals and the charities that serve them. One provision important to the restaurant industry would make permanent the temporary provision allowing all businesses to take the enhanced deduction for donations of food inventory.

    The NRA called for House members’ support of the legislation in a letter earlier this week, and has been an active voice in the process since earlier consideration by the House Committee on Ways and Means.

    “America’s restaurants give back to their communities in major ways, one of the most significant of which is through food donation,” said Dave Koenig, Vice President, Tax and Profitability, National Restaurant Association. “The deduction for charitable donation of food inventory is a critical tool in alleviating hunger, as it helps to offset the costs associated with preserving, storing and transporting food donations. We thank members of the House for supporting this legislation, particularly Congressman Tom Reed for his leadership on this issue.”

    According to NRA research, 83 percent of restaurants that made a charitable contribution in 2011 donated food to individuals or charitable organizations. The NRA has partnered with Food Donation Connection (“FDC”) to strengthen food donation efforts. Founded by a former restaurant executive, FDC serves as the liaison between restaurants and social service agencies adept at getting food to people in need. Since 1992, FDC has helped facilitate the donation of over 210 million pounds of food to non-profit hunger relief agencies.

    H.R. 4719 would improve the current food inventory provision by extending the enhanced deduction to all businesses. For nearly 30 years since its inception in 1976, the tax deduction for contributions of food inventory was limited to C corporations. In 2005, the provision was temporarily expanded to include all businesses (i.e., Subchapter S corporations, limited liability companies). This temporary expansion has been extended on subsequent occasions. By allowing non-C corporations to take the same deduction, FDC has reported a 127 percent increase in pounds of food donated by restaurant clients. Making permanent the temporary component of the deduction would make it more effective, while advancing the objectives of providing taxpayers with simplicity and predictability.

    Contact: Katie Laning Niebaum (202) 973-3967, Christin Fernandez (202) 331-5939


    Founded in 1919, the National Restaurant Association is the leading business association for the restaurant industry, which comprises 990,000 restaurant and foodservice outlets and a workforce of more than 13.5 million employees. We represent the industry in Washington, D.C., and advocate on its behalf. We operate the industry's largest trade show (NRA Show May 16-19, 2015, in Chicago); leading food safety training and certification program (ServSafe); unique career-building high school program (the NRAEF's ProStart); as well as the Kids LiveWell program promoting healthful kids' menu options. For more information, visit and find us on Twitter @WeRRestaurants, Facebook and YouTube.
  • 16 Jul 2014 11:53 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    The Atlanta Foodservice Expo is proud to announce the 2014 Seminar Schedule!

    Sessions have been developed in conjunction with industry leaders to ensure that attendees get the best educational value from attending the event.

    Topics include:
    • Recruitment and Retention Best Practices
    • Menu Engineering
    • Website Development Best Practices
    • Online Marketing / Social Media
    • Off Site Catering
    • Allergy Awareness
    • Gluten Free Menus
    • Wine and Beverage Program Development
    Click here to access the full Seminar Program.

    Seminars organized by Atlanta Foodservice Expo are included in the Expo Hall Badge at no extra cost and open to all attendees!

    There are also additional programs available that will require an extra fee and/or reservation. These programs include:
  • 15 Jul 2014 9:13 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    National Restaurant Association

    The National Restaurant Association’s Kids LiveWell initiative is celebrating its third anniversary throughout the month of July and would like to invite you to join in the celebration. Mark your calendars for Thursday, July 24 at 3:00 p.m. ET for a Kids LiveWell Twitter party.

    The National Restaurant Association, in its continuing effort to promote more nutritious kids menu options, has invited Joy Dubost, Ph.D., R.D., its senior director of food and healthy living to answer some of your questions live from @joyofnutrition. To join the conversation, follow Kids LiveWell on Twitter at @KidsLiveWell and tweet with the hashtag #KidsLiveWellChat.

    In addition to celebrating the Kids LiveWell program’s third birthday, the Twitter party will focus on:
    • The importance of restaurants offering nutritious options for kids
    • Tips for helping kids to make healthful choices
    • How to find nutritious menu options while on-the-go
    “We are thrilled to be celebrating the third anniversary of the Kids LiveWell program and are proud of how much participation we have received from restaurants and foodservice operations in just three short years,” said Joy Dubost. “It is important for families and caregivers to be part of the conversation to build awareness about the nutritious choices available when dining out with children.”

    Those that participate in the Twitter party using the hashtag will have the opportunity to win a gift card to the Kids LiveWell restaurant of his or her choice. Winners will be randomly selected throughout the chat.

    The Kids LiveWell initiative, which launched in 2011, is focused on providing healthful menu choices for children by increasing servings of fruits and vegetables, lean protein, whole grains and low-fat dairy, while limiting unhealthful fats, sugar and sodium.

    There are more than 145 restaurant brands representing over 42,000 locations nationwide participating in the program.

    For more information on Kids LiveWell, visit the website and download the free Kids LiveWell app.
  • 08 Jul 2014 10:59 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    City’s most popular food festival returns to Midtown at Tech Square October 24-26

    ATLANTA (July 8, 2014) – The best bites from Buckhead, Inman Park, Decatur, Roswell, Westside and beyond will all be served up in Midtown at Tech Square this fall! Taste of Atlanta, the city’s premier food, wine, beer and cocktail event, returns Friday, October 24 – Sunday, October 26, 2014, and tickets will go on sale Friday, July 11.

    Now in its 13th year, the famed three-day festival attracts tens of thousands of food lovers to experience what makes Atlanta the Food Capital of the South. With a smorgasbord of culinary creations, live entertainment, specialty food and beverage tents and four live cooking stages--including The Chef’s Table, The Kitchen Workshop, The Big Green Egg Grilling Experience and The Family Food Zone--festival-goers will receive a truly authentic taste of Atlanta.

    This year’s festival will spice things up with a new format, which highlights Atlanta’s individual neighborhoods and the restaurants that call them home. With esteemed eateries from both inside and outside of the perimeter, attendees will sample a variety of flavors, discover new dining treasures and root for their favorite local spots!

    For food lovers hungry for the latest festival news and updates, Taste of Atlanta has officially launched its 2014 website ( Serving as the ultimate resource for festival fans, the site provides guests with helpful content, event programming, participating restaurants, community partners, pre-event schedules, social media links, photos and videos to offer a detailed overview of what visitors can expect at the 13th annual, three-day food festival.

    Guests are encouraged to visit the site for the most recent festival news, as event organizers will continue to update the site and dish out the details leading up to the festival.

    WHAT: 13th Annual Taste of Atlanta Tickets on Sale July 11, 2014
    WHEN: Friday, October 24 – Sunday, October 26, 2014
    7:30 p.m. – 10:30 p.m., Friday Night Festival Kickoff Party
    VIP Entry begins at 6:30 p.m.

    12:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m., Festival, Saturday
    VIP Experience is open from 12:30 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.

    12:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m., Festival, Sunday
    VIP Experience is open from 12:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.

    WHERE: Midtown at Tech Square
    The street festival will span eight acres and 10 city blocks in Midtown, including Spring Street and 5th Street

    COST: Festival tickets will go on sale Friday, July 11, 2014

    Festival General Admission: $25 in advance, $35 at event
    Includes 10 taste coupons; additional taste coupons are $1 each

    Festival VIP tickets: $75 in advance, $85 at the event
    Includes 10 taste coupons, souvenir tasting glass, exclusive access to the Wine+Beer+Cocktail Experience
    **Pricing for the Friday night kickoff party will be announced soon

    About Taste of Atlanta:
    Taste of Atlanta packs the bold flavors, colorful personalities and vibrant energy of an entire city into 10 blocks in Midtown Atlanta. The three-day festival explores the city's unique neighborhoods by sampling tastes from the chefs and bartenders that give each area its own creative energy. Since its inception in 2002, Taste of Atlanta has become an annual pilgrimage for thousands of food, wine, beer and cocktail lovers from across the country. Festival attendees bring their adventurous appetites and experience a full range of flavors, from time-honored Southern classics to innovative dishes that are destined to be the next culinary trend. Patrons also enjoy interactive cooking demonstrations on four main stages, live entertainment and family-friendly activities for food lovers of all ages. Taste of Atlanta supports several Atlanta non-profit groups, including Share Our Strength’s Cooking Matters, Atlanta’s Table, Georgia Organics and Hospitality Education Foundation of Georgia and ProStart®. Indulge in the city’s flavors Friday through Sunday, October 24-26 in Midtown at Tech Square to truly savor what makes Atlanta the food capital of the South. For more information, visit

    Stay connected to Taste of Atlanta 2014:
    • Sign up for the Taste of Atlanta newsletter:
    • Follow Taste on Twitter:
    • Like Taste on Facebook:
    • Follow Taste on Pinterest:
    • Follow Taste on Instagram:

    # # #

    Jennifer Walker/ Shannon King
    BRAVE Public Relations

  • 06 Jul 2014 11:18 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    GRA member Southern Art was was featured on this past weekend's episode of Atlanta Eats.

    Southern Art - What’s an acclaimed chef to do after working with the likes of Oprah and Lady Gaga? Open up a restaurant in Atlanta, of course! Southern Art celebrates everything that makes our cuisine fabulous; bourbon, fried chicken and pies as far as the eye can see! Oh, and did we mention the ham bar? Oh yes, there’s a ham bar. SO, the only question is? How fast can you get to Southern Art?

    Click here to watch a recap of the episode.
  • 27 Jun 2014 11:56 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Source: National Restaurant Association

    (Washington, D.C.) The National Restaurant Association (NRA), the leading business association for the restaurant and foodservice industry, today commended Senator Johnny Isakson (R-GA) for his leadership in introducing the “Auto Enroll Repeal Act” in the U.S. Senate. The bill eliminates the automatic enrollment requirement under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which is redundant and unnecessary.

    “We thank Senator Isakson for addressing this challenging part of the health care law which could negatively impact both restaurant owners and their employees,” said Scott DeFife, Executive Vice President of Policy and Government Affairs for the National Restaurant Association. “The auto enrollment requirement could cause greater confusion for employees about their decision on coverage and create additional administrative burden for employers, without increasing employees access to coverage. Auto enrollment is unnecessary and redundant as it duplicates the requirement that larger employers offer coverage under the law’s employer mandate. In an industry where there are thousands of part-time, seasonal, and temporary workers, eliminating the auto enrollment provision will alleviate the potential negative financial impact on employees who inadvertently miss opt-out deadlines and free restaurant owners from additional unnecessary paperwork.”

    Currently, ACA requires employers with more than 200 full-time employees to automatically enroll all full-time employees in their lowest-cost coverage option unless the employee opts out within a certain time period.

    The NRA sent a letter to Senator Isakson supporting introduction and passage of this legislation which can be read here.

    Contact: Christin Fernandez (202) 331-5939

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