Families or individuals in the community that frequent the restaurant on Buckwalter Road in Royersford may have seen some local stars gracing the walls. Athletes from , Perkiomen Valley High School and are pictured on the special "local walls" that Applebee's designated.
General Manager of the Royersford branch Todd Naiko said these walls have been dedicated for almost two years now.
"It's part of our brand and it's been part of our brand for a really long time," he said. "We switched over the core of the restaurant two years this summer. When we redid the wallpaper and stained glass and bar top and things like that, we also wanted to create something local. So we did the walls that show pictures of all of the different local sports."
He described the pictures as memories from the recent past.
"Just some of the great moments in sports that have happened locally over the past three or four years," he continued. "We like to switch them out. I've had people come up to me like the hockey one from last year, a couple of track stars from Spring-Ford last year. Happy to do it. It's nice. Families come in and they sit right next to their own picture. It's cool."
The original batch of photos came in from local photographer David March, who made up professional copies to be displayed. Naiko said March's photos only take up about half of what is shown now, as members of the community have donated their own. Naiko added that it doesn't have to be only sports to be considered.
"Something that roles into our brand," he said. "Family, having fun, community. Anything's based around that, we're good for. Anything that's local. That's just local teams. It doesn't have to be schools. It always drives to that, because of the family thing."
Overall, Naiko said the community has shown a very positive response to the local walls, citing an example from the weekly fundraisers the restaurant hosts.
"They love it," he said. "It is nice. We have Flapjack Fundraisers on Saturday and Sunday. The teams on the wall are the teams doing those fundraisers. So, it's a tie-in we have with the teams. Fastpitch 10, 13 and 15, we had three weeks in a row. That's really neat."
The restaurant holds an Alex's Lemonade Stand fundraiser every summer. Naiko said preparations are being made for the beginning of that, with the latest fundraiser happening on Mother's Day this weekend.
"We're going to have a Mother's Day and Father's Day basket raffle," he concluded. "For Mother's Day, we'll have something from a spa, chocolates, gift certificates, and anything we get through those will go to Alex's Lemonade. Our goal this year is $5,000. Everybody that comes in, it will be three tickets for $5 and one ticket for $2. Hopefully we can raise a bunch of money."