BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - The scent of syrup and sausage filled the air outside Baton Rouge General’s Bluebonnet location Friday morning. The sizzle of fluffy white batter hitting a hot griddle told the tale to everyone standing in the line that meandered past the loading docks.
“That’s a lot of pancakes,” joked Gary Haindel Chairman of the Downtown Kiwanas Club’s Pancake Festival.
Fourteen hundred twenty to be exact. And it was Gary’s job to make sure everyone had their fill.
The yearly love fest of hotcakes and maple usually takes place in the spring, and feeds nearly 10 thousand people at LSU’s Pete Maravich Assembly Center.
Like many other things this year COVID-19 put a damper on that, but club members would not let it stamp out the syrupy-sweet smiles brought on by a hot pancake breakfast.
Gary said the club thought it would be a good to put a smile on the faces for front-line workers. “We’re thankful for the people that have not taken a day off in eight months, and have served our community tirelessly -- leaving their own families to help the sick.” Gary said.
“It’s an incredible morale booster for our entire crew,” said Erick Showalter, President of the Baton Rouge General Foundation. “They’ve been going since March, and they’re still going -- treating COVID, but treating everything else, too. If you walk down the halls, you see people smiling. It’s already started to generate some excitement and happiness throughout the hospital.”
Those smiles are matched by the dozens of Kiwanians flipping cakes, frying sausages, and boxing breakfasts. They can’t help it Gary said. “Whenever you’re investing in people and giving back to the community, there’s a lot of satisfaction in that.”
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