Chick-fil-A celebrated its new Canyon Park location last week with raffles, a camp-out and 10,000 meals for local hungry children.
Matt Isenhower, the Bothell location’s owner and operator, used the First 100 celebration on Nov. 16 to host a hunger project for Food Lifeline, a local organization that fights hunger. Community members who participated in the First 100 event, packed 10,000 meals for hungry children across Western Washington.
“I’m very passionate about education and youth,” said Isenhower. “So making sure that children have full bellies can help them learn and move forward in their lives.”
Chick-fil-A is a partner of Feeding Children Everywhere, an international social charity that organizes and hosts hunger projects that help feed children in need.
The First 100 is an event held at every Chick-fil-A grand opening, during which the first 100 customers stand in line and camp out for 24 hours before the restaurant opens. They’re then rewarded with a year’s worth of Chick-fil-A.
The Bothell location will also be collecting new and gently used children’s books to benefit the Bothell YMCA.
“Their library was looking a little thin,” said Whitney Schwartz, the grand opening event planner. “So they were so so excited to partner with us.”
Isenhower and his team also celebrated the opening earlier in the week at a preview event on Nov. 13 that featured live music from Seattle musician, Max Cobb. The restaurant was full of customers who got to sample the menu, tour the facility and enter to win raffle prizes.
“I’m humbled by (the) amazing turnout,” Isenhower said. “We actually had this event oversubscribed within 24 hours of inviting folks, my event planner, Whitney, said that’s the first time she’s seen that happen.”
Isenhower is an Eastside local who grew up and lives in Redmond. He said he’s excited to use his business to give back to the community.
“I’ve always wanted to own my own business and be an entrepreneur,” he said. “I was very excited to partner with Chick-fil-A, which has this unique owner-operator model, and to be a positive influence on our community here.”
Isenhower, a Redmond High School graduate, has served in the U.S. Navy, received a master’s from Harvard Business School, worked as director of operations for Burger King and senior product manager for Amazon.
Currently, Isenhower is a Lake Washington Schools Foundation co-president and member of the Bothell Chamber of Commerce.
“I’m excited to introduce Chick-fil-A to the Bothell community,” he said. “There are so many people here who haven’t had it before. They don’t know what makes us special. Specifically, not only the great food, but the exceptional service we provide and how we give back to our community. So to be a brand pioneer here where I grew up is very special to me.”