Jack's Goes Green for Muscular Dystrophy

Published Feb. 18, 2013


BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – Saint Patrick’s Day is not until March 17, but Jack’s restaurants will be going green for the next month to support the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) Shamrocks Against Dystrophy campaign.

The St. Patrick's Day fundraiser is supported by restaurants, bars, retailers and businesses to help people with neuromuscular diseases. Last year, Jack’s restaurants raised an unprecedented $119,594, helping the Muscular Dystrophy Association of Greater Alabama surpass its goal of $220,000.

“It was a banner year,’ exclaimed Greater Alabama MDA Executive Director Terri Wilson. “The enthusiasm from each and every Jack’s manager was phenomenal. They truly have a passion for MDA and their families and it shows.”

Throughout the 4-week campaign, Feb. 18 – March 17,  associates at supermarkets, convenience stores, restaurants and other businesses will ask their customers to buy a $1 green shamrock or $5 gold shamrock to Make a Muscle and Make a Difference® for MDA. Customers sign the mobiles, which are then displayed on store windows, walls and ceilings.

This is Jack’s 15th year to participate. The company always yields big results and expands the program by going into the community for the cause.

“One of the things that makes Jack’s different is that they do special events – they really operate in the public,” Wilson said. “They don’t just sell the shamrocks for a dollar. They’re raising money for families where they are.”

This year, the Greater Alabama MDA office has expanded to include all of North Alabama, resulting in an increased Shamrock Goal of $450,000. Jack’s Marketing Director Pam Measel hopes the company will raise even more money this year to meet MDA’s new goal.

“Over the years, I’ve seen stores put on bake sales, gift basket raffles and yard sales to raise money for the campaign. Some Jack’s go as far as creating an entire day dedicated to the cause by hosting MDA Day with burger eating contests, fun and games,” Measel said. “It is humbling and amazing when store employees take the program on themselves like some did last year when they used their own personal resources to create Easter baskets to raffle off. Their good nature directly impacts the community.”

Jack’s is one of 50 companies participating in the campaign across Alabama, including Lowes, Cadence Bank, and Piggly Wiggly. Among those participating, Wilson recognizes Jack’s as a significant part of MDA’s Shamrock success.

“Last year was the first single sponsor we’ve ever had to raise $100,000 for the Shamrocks program,” said Wilson. “We are the no. 1 MDA office in the southeast division in Shamrocks, thanks in large part to Jacks. To have such a respected company be part of our mission is truly humbling.”  

The MDA Shamrocks campaign raises funds to support MDA’s fight against muscular dystrophy and related diseases, including its programs of research, services, advocacy and education. Jack’s team members and customers focus on sending kids to Alabama Special Camp for Children and Adults (ASCCA), where children with muscle diseases can enjoy a week of accessible fun at the end of June.

“There is a wide variety of progression at the camp with some kids walking and some in chairs, but a sponsor is there with each child for the entire week to take care of all their needs, and each child gets that independent experience of going to camp,” said Wilson. “The cost is $800 per kid, and through the funds raised last year, Jack’s could have sent up to 149 kids to camp.”

“Jack’s associates have attended the MDA Summer Camp program at Camp ASCCA for many years,” said Measel. “This program is so incredible and allows the children to do things they would never do.  We are so glad to be able to assist this program.” 

The MDA Shamrocks Against Dystrophy campaign started in 1982 and is the nation’s largest charity-related fundraiser associated with St. Patrick’s Day. It is currently the number one program for raising funds in Central Alabama.

For more information about Jack’s and the MDA Shamrocks Against Dystrophy campaign, please contact Lizzy Thomas at (601) 540‐3302 or by E‐mail at elizcthomas@gmail.com.



About Jack’s Family Restaurants, Inc.

Jack’s Family Restaurants, Inc. was started in 1960 in Homewood, Ala. The restaurant specializes in fresh burgers, crinkle‐cut fries and hand‐dipped shakes. Jack’s has more than 100 stores across the Southeast with locations in Alabama, Tennessee, Mississippi and Georgia. Since 1960, many things have changed in our world, but one thing has remained the same: Jack’s is still serving up great food, with a smile.