'First 100' Camping Out, Awaiting Chick-Fil-A Grand Opening

200 people arrived by 6 a.m. today at the Chick-Fil-A in Crystal Lake, but only 100 received tickets to camp out overnight and win a year's worth of Chick-Fil-A meals.


Apparently word has spread about the grand opening of Chick-Fil-A restaurant at 4812 Route 14 in Crystal Lake.

The "chikin" chain is scheduled to open at 8 a.m. Thursday, Aug. 9. Die-hard Chick-Fil-A fans know what that means: A First 100 Grand Opening Celebration.

The 'First 100' receive a ticket to camp out in the Chick-Fil-A parking lot for 24 hours and enjoy free meals, snacks and entertainment provided by the restaurant chain. Those with tickets are permitted to have guests.

Tomorrow, campers will awake at 5:30 a.m. and line up, single file, behind Chick-Fil-A's mascots, the cows. The cows will lead the First 100, age 18 and older, into the restaurant at 6 a.m. where each will receive gift certificates good for 52 combination meals. The coupons can be used at any Chick-Fil-A restaurant within the next year.

The value of the coupons exceeds $350, said Tiffany Greenway, a spokesperson from Chick-Fil-A's corporate office in Atlanta, Ga., who was on the scene Wednesday in Crystal Lake helping coordinate the grand opening.

"We're giving away $26,000 worth of food tomorrow," Greenway said.

The gift certificates are so valued by loyal Chick-Fil-A customers that people drove hundreds of miles to be among the First 100. Those camped out Wednesday in Crystal Lake included folks from St. Louis; Indianapolis; Eau Claire, Wis.; Chicago; and Naperville, just to name a few. 

Greenway said there were 200 people waiting in the Crystal Lake location parking lot (near Menards and west of Route 31) by 6 a.m. Wednesday.

All 200 were invited to throw their names into a lottery drawing, from which 100 lucky people were picked to participate in the grand opening. Each person was assigned a number that determines his/ her place in the line tomorrow morning. Counting the ticket holders' guests, there were 178 people camped in the restaurant parking lot.

Naperville resident Heide Rewerts, who wears a Chick-Fil-A name tag that reads "Raving Fan," was at the Crystal Lake restaurant Wednesday camping with her husband and in-laws, also from Naperville.

"This is my eighth opening," said Rewerts, who grew up in Georgia. "I've been eating Mr. Cathy's food since 1961."


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »