Throughout the summer our blog will showcase some of the many, Go, Lunch! summer meal sites. There are over 200 sites serving free meals and snacks throughout Franklin County this summer so unfortunately, we won’t be able to write about ALL of them. Please be sure you are following Go, Lunch! on social media where we will be sharing more information and details about all the fun places Go, Lunch! will be this summer.
There are many Go, Lunch! sites throughout Franklin County however, there is one in particular that is approaching the issue of summer hunger in a different and unique way. SON Ministries is an organization that helps kids and families in suburbs (particularly Hilliard). The organization’s goal is to help those in the community create a better society by teaching valuable skills to the younger generation. SON Ministries offers a Summer Lunch Camp where kids participate in activities and receive a free breakfast and lunch. One unique program teaches kids how to prepare food and how to operate a restaurant. The student-run restaurants, each with a different dining concept, are Fine Foods (American cookout foods), Horiz-N’ Shine (breakfast foods) and Taco Bell Jr. (Mexican-style family meals). The restaurants are open to anyone in the community at no charge. At these restaurants, students control every aspect from the name, the style of food, the decorations, and the music.
I got to visit the SON Ministries location at Hilliard Church of Christ and enjoy a lunch at Taco Bell Jr. As soon as I pulled up to the church, I could see signs and posters guiding me to the entrance of Taco Bell Jr. When I walked into the building, I was immediately greeted by the student hostesses, walked to my seat, and given a menu. The room was decorated with various decor such as streamers, signs, and a larger-than-life taco made of craft supplies.
Soon after being seated, my waiter came out and gave us appetizers, drinks, and took our order. It was a great to see all of the kids being so excited to run every aspect of the restaurant. For my entreé, the kids prepared chicken fajitas and a side of rice and beans. The students were ecstatic to have so many people in their restaurant, and it was amazing to see all the kids working together, as one unit, to achieve a similar goal.
The lunch at the restaurant is free; however, donations are encouraged to make sure SON Ministries can continue its invaluable services. Taco Bell Jr. is open on Wednesdays; however, the other SON Ministries restaurant locations are open different days of the week and offer different types of food. It was truly a great experience to visit one of the locations and see kids learning how to prepare and serve their own food.
To make reservations, visit http://son-ministries.org and click on the link that says, “Children’s Entrepreneurial Restaurants 2019” but don’t wait---reservations fill up quickly and the restaurants will soon close for the season.
By JD Mooney, Irvin PR