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Fundraising in its rarest form appears

While tips from some restaurants go into pockets of employees, on certain nights, tips made at Hanley’s BBQ will go right back into the community.

Hanley’s BBQ started hosting Cookout for a Cause 12 weeks ago. Since then it has been donating all tips made on a certain day, along with a percentage of the proceeds, to different causes in the community.

“Each Thursday we try to do a different charity or ministry to give back to Jessamine County,” Owner Les Hanley said. “We try to help out the community as much as we can.”

The most recent fundraiser was for Amber Parker, a Nicholasville woman who died in a crash last week. The restaurant donated 25 percent of its proceeds, 100 percent of its tips and raffled some items to help pay for Parker’s funeral. Hanley said the total came to $2,600 on Monday morning but donations will still be coming throughout the week. Hanley said he thinks it’ll be close to $3,000 by the end of the week.

“I had someone come in and buy a pork sandwich for $6 and left a $200 tip for the cause,” Hanley said. “I had never seen the guy before in my life.”

The day before the fundraiser even started, Hanley’s BBQ had raised $524.

“The community is what drives my business,” Hanley said. “So, it’s a full circle. I try to help out as much as I can. Some of these people are affected.”

Sometimes people come in with a $50 or $100 check for a cause, he said. “I mean, it’s really cool to see the community do this,” Hanley said. “They might know these people, they might not. It’s just really cool.”

Some other businesses help Hanley’s BBQ with fundraising, Advance Auto Parts, Malone’s Bluegrass Hospitality Group, At Your Table Catering and The Big Cheese Beer Cheese helped Hanley’s BBQ for a beer cheese basket that was raffled.

“I would like to see more business step up and help out the community,” Hanley said.

“We are in a small town, and we need to support one another. I think it would show so much support and morale around this town.”