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Red Lobster is closed for remodel, and gave contents to Habitat for Humanity

Looking for a few hundred chairs? Need a lobster tank of your very own?

Washington County’s Habitat for Humanity ReStore in Beaverton is filled to the brim with these and many more offerings after Tigard’s Red Lobster restaurant donated its entire store to the nonprofit.

The Tigard restaurant closed its doors last month for an extensive remodel, and rather than throw out chairs, tables, kitchen equipment and other accoutrement, owners opted to donate the restaurant’s entire contents to help out Habitat for Humanity.

“I thought it was great,” said Brieanna Weaver, outreach coordinator for the ReStore, who helped remove the furnishings from the restaurant. “They were gutting out the interior and starting over fresh.”

The items are for sale at the ReStore. Proceeds from the ReStore help Habitat for Humanity build homes across Washington County.

This was far from a typical donation, Weaver said.

ReStore managers had about a week to prepare for the massive donation.

Some of the items were sent to a soup kitchen in Texas, but the rest of the restaurant’s interior — including appliances, tables and chairs, décor, picture frames, light fixtures, nautical souvenir items and wood paneling — were taken back to the Beaverton store.

It took two days to empty the restaurant, Weaver said.

“We took as much as we could carry,” Weaver said. “It was a lot of work, but our volunteers were great and were really dedicated to the cause.”

The items are expected to secure an estimated $15,000 for Habitat for Humanity.

Weaver said individuals looking to start up their own business might be interested in some of the items. “We are trying to spread the word. We have a ton of restaurant equipment in right now.”

Megan Wholey, a spokeswoman with Red Lobster, said the restaurant chain has long had a partnership with Habitat for Humanity through its parent company Darden Restaurants.

“Darden is committed to making a difference in its communities, through philanthropic support of charitable organizations, as well as through the volunteer involvement of its restaurants and 200,000-plus employees,” Wholey said. “Red Lobster, Olive Garden and LongHorn Steakhouse restaurants donate furnishings from all remodeled restaurants to local Habitat for Humanity ReStore resale outlets.”

This isn’t the first time Red Lobster has donated to the ReStore.

When the restaurant chain was doing smaller remodeling projects in Gresham and Vancouver, Wash., it donated several items to ReStores in Multnomah County.

“They are a great company — they are very generous,” Weaver said. “They really are big fans of Habitat, and we love working with them.”

The Washington County ReStore is located at 13475 S.W. Millikan Way in Beaverton.

The Tigard Red Lobster is expected to reopen in January.

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