'Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day' draws long lines

JIM BLAYLOCK/STAFF
A line of people trailed down the side of Chick-Fil-A at Mullins Crossing in Evans. Some customers were showing their support for the chicken chain as the company continues to be criticized for an executive’s comments about gay marriage.
Wednesday, Aug 1, 2012 12:38 PM
Last updated Thursday, Aug 2, 2012 1:33 AM
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Chick-fil-A restaurants were a lot busier Wednesday, and it had more to do with customers coming out to support the company executive’s views on marriage than simply wanting a chicken sandwich.

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Traffic backed up out of the Chick-fi-A in North Augusta on Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day.  TIM RAUSCH/STAFF
TIM RAUSCH/STAFF
Traffic backed up out of the Chick-fi-A in North Augusta on Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day.

Lance Danko, of North Augusta, and his family visited the Chick-fil-A in North Augusta before the lunch rush, and they didn’t mind waiting in line for nearly an hour. Customers were lined up out the door and it was standing room only.

“We came here to show our support and our appreciation,” Danko said. “We’re Christians, and Chick-fil-A is a wonderful Christian organization. I really feel like they’ve been taken an unfair hit with all of the publicity lately, so we wanted to come out and show our support.”

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, a Baptist minister, declared Wednesday as national “Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day.” Across the nation came reports of long lines and traffic jams at restaurants.

Chick-fil-A president Dan Cathy told the Baptist Press last month that the Atlanta-based company was “guilty as charged” for backing “the biblical definition of a family.” That unleashed a torrent of criticism from gay rights groups and others, who have called for boycotts and efforts to block the chain from opening new stores.

Billy Arrington, of North Augusta, and his wife, children and grandchildren eat at Chick-fil-A every so often, but they made a special trip to support the restaurant Wednesday.

“I’ve heard a good many people say that they were going ... just to show support for the Cathy family because of their Christian values. I think it’s the right thing to do,” Arrington said. “I think Christian values have been pushed back in this country for too long now. I think that this is what we were built upon. Our forefathers built one nation under God, and I think that’s what we should be.”

Karen Nelson and Lesia McCormick, of North Augusta, left Chick-fil-A with armfuls of food bags after they waited in line for almost 40 minutes.

“Nobody’s going to tell me what I should and shouldn’t do. I’m going to eat where I want to eat,” Nelson said. “It’s true what the Bible says, so it’s whether people want to agree or not. People are definitely showing up for the cause.”

Despite being the cause of the swell of customers, the company did not endorse the appreciation day.

“Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day was created by our fans, not Chick-fil-A,” Steve Robinson, Chick-fil-A’s executive vice president of marketing, said in a statement. “We appreciate all of our customers and are glad to serve them at any time. Our goal is simple: to provide great food, genuine hospitality, and to have a positive influence on all who come in to Chick-fil-A.”

National figures participated in the appreciation day. A spokeswoman for the Rev. Billy Graham says the 93-year-old evangelist ate a Chick-fil-A lunch, including a chicken sandwich and waffle fries, at his North Carolina home.

Opponents of the company’s stance are planning “Kiss Mor Chiks” for Friday, when they are encouraging people of the same sex to show up at Chick-fil-A restaurants around the country and kiss each other.

Associated Press contributed to this article.

Comments (136) Add comment
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BamaMan
2396
Points
BamaMan 08/01/12 - 12:56 pm
21
1
???

Let me get this straight...just WHO is calling WHO haters? I hope Chic-fil-a runs out of food. I'll be making my visit later today, and if I just have to buy something to drink because they're out of food, so be it. Chics kissing? Please....and this IS a very positive event. Mr. Cathy NEVER bashed gays, HE WAS ASKED FOR HIS OPINION on same-sex marriage, and he gave it, as well as what the Bible says about same-sex situations. So I guess because people don't agree with YOU, makes them haters? Like I said, just WHO is calling WHO haters?

lsmith
105
Points
lsmith 08/01/12 - 12:54 pm
0
0
Wallace and Frank kissing in
Unpublished

Wallace and Frank kissing in the parking lot. That's what wrong with the gay pride movement. They think the answer is putting in "their face" that which many people find to be offensive. The result is.........no one wins. Those who are offended are more adamantly than ever opposed to gay agenda. Perhaps I'll show up friday and plant a big kiss on my dog...

HenryWalker3rd
2393
Points
HenryWalker3rd 08/01/12 - 12:54 pm
7
5
Which of these is the greatest one?
Unpublished

"Which is the greatest commandment, then?"

Love God, then love the next man.

You can love the person, but totally hate the sin.

With all of the homosexual energy being poured into society, I guess this is a positive event.

malcolm33
53
Points
malcolm33 08/01/12 - 01:03 pm
11
0
Media coverage

Wanna guess which of these events get more national media coverage?

David Parker
7923
Points
David Parker 08/01/12 - 01:12 pm
4
21
I remember in the good ole

I remember in the good ole days when they were a restaurant concerned with selling chicken sandwiches. Now it appears they are making demands, "EAT MOR CHICKEN", as well as other non-chicken related issues. I'd just be fine with my food staying quiet instead of rattling it's opinions off to me every time I turn around.

InChristLove
22480
Points
InChristLove 08/01/12 - 01:14 pm
9
5
Notice it says they are

Notice it says they are encouraged to "show up" at Chick-fil-a on Friday to kiss but say nothing about making a purchase. I sincerely hope these individuals are required to remain outside the business unless they are going to make a food or drink purchase.

I'm curious why the AC decided to take a picture of a Chick-fil-a in North Augusta, why not one of the ones located here in Augusta/Martinez/Evans area?

David Parker
7923
Points
David Parker 08/01/12 - 01:20 pm
4
21
"Our goal is simple: to

"Our goal is simple: to provide great food, genuine hospitality, and to have a positive influence on all who come in to Chick-fil-A."

1. the food is just an alternative to Mc Donalds (no offense)
2. Judging people is not hospitable in or out of your restaurant
3. I don't like to be influenced by a stranger. Just feed me sir.

vermint
802
Points
vermint 08/01/12 - 01:45 pm
19
1
Nobody's judging

Mr. Parker, the CEO did not judge gay marriage...he simply answered a question on what his opinion was of it.

countyman
20244
Points
countyman 08/01/12 - 02:05 pm
3
11
The poster ICL asked why the

The poster ICL asked why the AC didn't include the Chick Fil A restaurants in the Augusta/Martinez/Evans area...

While the Martinez address can be used in the 30907 part of West Augusta.. When people think of 'Martinez' Columbia County comes to mind..

PhiloPublius
386
Points
PhiloPublius 08/01/12 - 02:13 pm
19
5
Best sandwich ever!

I waited in line outside for just over an hour and it was worth every minute.

The world needs to realize who the majority really is, and that we are standing up, not for hate, but for what is right. The liberals and the left wing media try to say that we are Haters and anti-gay. It isn't about hate at all, it is about right and wrong. I don't hate any homosexuals, I have been friends with, and worked with several. However, I do believe that they are infecting the moral fabric of our nation and that what they are doing is Wrong.

I believe that I am in the majority and it is time that we are allowed to have our say in the matter.

etlinks
21222
Points
etlinks 08/01/12 - 02:25 pm
16
2
packed

I just rode by the NA location and the streets are backed up in every direction. Good for Mr. Cathy.

vermint
802
Points
vermint 08/01/12 - 02:28 pm
8
3
PhiloPublius

What you said! I have no hate for gays...shoot, I have a cousin who is gay! I've also had a few gay friends over the years...sadly most of them are gone now. I love them all dearly. It's not my place to judge them, God will deal with them however He sees fit.

Dixieman
15335
Points
Dixieman 08/01/12 - 02:33 pm
13
1
Great day

I went for breakfast and am going again for dinner. Would have gone for lunch but had other plans made far in advance.

KSL
131325
Points
KSL 08/01/12 - 02:36 pm
11
0
Aiken Public Safety had

Aiken Public Safety had several officers directing traffic and the traffic trying to get into Chic Fill A was backed up a half of a mile on Whiskey Rd at 11:30.

Gordon
31
Points
Gordon 08/01/12 - 03:10 pm
9
1
Tip of the Ice Berg

Chick-fil-A is just the tip of the ice berg. The left would like to put many more major companies out of business because they support conservative causes. They've even published a list:
http://thinkprogress.org/election/2012/07/19/543801/consumer-brands-cons...

David Parker
7923
Points
David Parker 08/01/12 - 03:11 pm
3
14
hey that's great that you can

hey that's great that you can be friends with gays as yall put it. and maybe there is some connection between them being dead as you put it and their gayness. And it's ever so great that God will deal with them as you put it. Just glad there's no judgement being made here.

Gimme a break. just go buy me a chicken sandwich.

carcraft
26266
Points
carcraft 08/01/12 - 03:12 pm
8
0
Went in tothe one at Augusta

Went in tothe one at Augusta West Parkway about 11:30, they were jammed took me a little over 20 minuets to be in through the drive up and out.

Just My Opinion
5709
Points
Just My Opinion 08/01/12 - 03:13 pm
13
2
Yeah, I think it's obvious

Yeah, I think it's obvious that this one blew up in the faces of all those gay rights folks (forgive the bad pun)! CFA has too big and too die-hard of a following, and the company itself has such a strict and Biblically moral base to be swayed by some small liberal group who just want to focus attention on themselves! And I really believe that if they think that them showing up on Friday for some stupid Kiss A Chik thing is going to be detrimental to CFA, then they have another thing coming! I would bet money that the same CFA fans that showed up today will show up on Friday...and I'll count myself in with the CFA fan contingent! I can see us stepping in front of any food-ordering kissing homosexual couple and placing our order! Kind of like ignoring an obnoxious customer who'd rather talk on his cellphone than place his order!

pommom38
1496
Points
pommom38 08/01/12 - 03:22 pm
5
17
Newsflash, KFC sells chicken too!

Idiots blocking the traffic flow for a chicken samwich?! Lord have mercy, aren't there way more important factors/issues to stand up for?
I don't care what the man said or didn't say, this is just another excuse for people to shove their opinions down each others throat.

David Parker
7923
Points
David Parker 08/01/12 - 03:23 pm
3
11
The marketing guy at CFA is

The marketing guy at CFA is worth double his weight in gold. He's in bed with both sides and both are making efforts to bum rush chik-fila's for their cause. Its the catbird seat alright.

Jake
32770
Points
Jake 08/01/12 - 03:24 pm
13
7
All this to-do

about a fast food chicken sandwich? I guess if the CEO of the Ex-Lax corporation comes out against gay marriage then there will be a "run" on his product as well in the CSRA.

David Parker
7923
Points
David Parker 08/01/12 - 03:28 pm
3
16
ya think?

I don't care what the man said or didn't say, this is just another excuse for people to shove their opinions down each others throat.

Angie H
4300
Points
Angie H 08/01/12 - 03:30 pm
16
3
I guess the Guy at CFA should

I guess the Guy at CFA should have just lied when he was asked the question?

Angie H
4300
Points
Angie H 08/01/12 - 03:34 pm
16
3
I guess there are better

I guess there are better things to stand up for than one's right to freedom. What a silly thing to take a stand on.

BamaMan
2396
Points
BamaMan 08/01/12 - 03:37 pm
11
4
Just My Opinion...

I'll be in attendance on Friday as well. Just to make a statement, not to hate or be ugly. I don't hate or am not ugly to ANYONE, even one that is to me. I agree with every single word you typed. Yes, I can get a chicken sandwich at KFC, the chicken sandwich has nothing to do with it. What does this say, about just how many people support gay marriage? So why are states passing laws to allow it? Did they think about asking us, the VOTERS???

Angie H
4300
Points
Angie H 08/01/12 - 03:39 pm
11
3
BamaMan.....they tried asking

BamaMan.....they tried asking the voters....and the voters usually said no.

specsta
6519
Points
specsta 08/01/12 - 04:01 pm
4
16
Eat More Sodium and Fat

If anything, Chik-fil-A should be boycotted for the sodium-loaded and fat-infused sandwiches they serve. Eat one of those heart-attacks on a bun, and you'll get a whopping 2300mg of sodium and 16 grams of fat. That's more than half of the maximum amount of sodium that one should ingest on a daily basis. Hello high blood pressure, heart failure and kidney disease.

Chik-fil-A is out to make a buck. Period. They couldn't care less about their customers, or they would make their food healthier to eat. It is ridiculous that people would support a company that destroys their bodies with unhealthy food. To claim to be a "Christian" company and then serve its customers food that is so unhealthy, is rather hypocritical.

Throw in their nasty attitude toward gay people, and this is one company that has shown its true colors. How about truth in advertising?...I'll call them Chik-fil-F.

harley_52
23645
Points
harley_52 08/01/12 - 04:03 pm
13
1
Even California Voters....

....said "no" to homosexual marriage and passed a Constitutional Amendment making it illegal. Did that matter to the lefties?

Of course not.

The liberal 9th Circuit Court declared the Constitutional Amendment Unconstitutional.

What's a normal citizen supposed to do?

harley_52
23645
Points
harley_52 08/01/12 - 04:04 pm
10
0
"I'll call them Chik-fil-F."

Of course you will.

harley_52
23645
Points
harley_52 08/01/12 - 04:07 pm
10
1
Look At The Picture....

...of the people lined up to get into Chick-fil-A.

Hate filled, evil troublemakers if ever I have seen one. You can tell by the smiles on their faces.

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