Oh, the power of the free market and of bloggers!
Mere hours after the news (of an Olive Garden restaurant in Oxford, Alabama banned a woman, Marti Warren, from bringing an American flag into the restaurant for her Kiwanis Club meeting) went viral, and patriots began inundating Olive Garden’s parent company, Darden, with outraged e-mails, Olive Garden eats crow and has issued an apology:
“We are very sorry for any misunderstanding about this issue. We do not have a policy at Olive Garden concerning bringing the American flag into our restaurants. Some members of our team were misinformed about company policy by our corporate office. As a company, we take responsibility for that and we regret it. We take pride in how we communicate to our restaurants and we are correcting this so it doesn’t happen again. Like all Americans, we have nothing but the utmost respect and admiration for the American flag and everything it symbolizes, and we welcome anyone who wishes to bring the flag into our restaurants. In fact, we periodically provide American flag collar pins to our employees to wear while serving guests.”
The VP of Olive Garden contacted Marti Warren and will be coming to Oxford to personally apologize to all the Golden K Kiwanis Club members.
~Dave & Eowyn
The Olive Garden restaurant in Oxford, Alabama, barred an 80-year-old woman from bringing an American flag into the restaurant for a planned Kiwanis Club banquet.
A report by the AP and WPEC-CBS12.com, October 12, 2011, says Marti Warren of Anniston learned the night of the banquet that she wouldn’t be allowed to display the flag or the Kiwanis banner in the restaurant.
Warren told WBRC-TV, “I was so angry, I felt like I had been slapped in the face.”
Officials with Darden Restaurants, the Orlando-based parent company of Olive Garden restaurants, stand by the decision and released a statement saying that “like all Americans we have nothing but the utmost respect and admiration for the American flag and everything it symbolizes.” However since the Oxford Olive Garden lacks a private dining area, they banned the flag so as “To be fair to everyone and avoid disrupting the dining experience for all other guests.”
H/t beloved fellow Tina.
Send Olive Garden an email and let them know what you think. Click here.
H/t beloved FOTM writer DCG