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Free stacks on National Pancake Day

For the seventh consecutive year, IHOP restaurants will offer free buttermilk pancakes to raise money for charity.

By Giselle Smith Feb 22, 2012 4:21PM

What's better than a short stack of buttermilk pancakes draped in butter and syrup?


Free pancakes, of course, which is just what IHOP is offering customers on Tuesday, Feb. 28.


On National Pancake Day, an annual event created by IHOP in 2006, anyone can walk into any of the chain's more than 1,500 restaurants and request a short stack of buttermilk pancakes between 7 a.m. and 10 p.m. Though a short stack (three cakes) is free, IHOP asks customers to consider making a charitable donation.


All told, the event has raised almost $8 million for Children's Miracle Network Hospitals and local charities, according to the chain's website. The goal this year is $2.7 million.


The fine print

Customers are limited to one short stack per person. Donations are voluntary, and no purchase is required. (Post continues below.)

IHOPs are operated and franchised by International House of Pancakes LLC, and 99% of the restaurants are franchises. The 53-year-old family restaurant company has 1,532 locations in North America, Guatemala, Mexico, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.


Children's Miracle Network Hospitals is a charitable organization founded in 1983 by celebrities Marie Osmond and John Schneider that now raises money for 170 hospitals in North America.


According to an IHOP press release, National Pancake Day is based on the centuries-old tradition of serving pancakes on Shrove Tuesday, the day before Lent begins, when people would use up their eggs, milk, butter and other dairy products. IHOP's 2012 celebration occurs a week later, however.


Think you might forget to head to IHOP for breakfast on Tuesday? The company is offering "wake-up calls" recorded by celebrities such as Miss America Laura Kaeppeler, singers David Archuleta and Jordin Sparks, NFL Hall of Famer Steve Young and the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals co-founders. Customers can register for a call on the National Pancake Day website through Friday, Feb. 24.


Also through Friday, IHOP is running a "Stacks for Good Acts" competition, which lets customers compete to win free pancakes for a year by submitting stories of their own good deeds or those of someone they know. "Free pancakes" means one free short stack per day for 365 days.


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Feb 22, 2012 11:04PM
Feb 23, 2012 5:48PM

If only others would do the same, imagine the impact.

Feb 23, 2012 8:40PM
I wonder how well they will accept the homeless that come in?
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