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Tualatin Chamber group invites BBQ-lovers to dine out for a cause

Jo's Bar & Grill collecting money for VFW Auxiliary next Monday.

TIMES PHOTO: JAIME VALDEZ - Jerry Todd, general manager of Jo's Bar & Grill, and Brooke Auvil, a bartender at the bar, hold a brisket just out of the oven. Jo's will be participating, along with other barbecue restaurants, in a promotion for local nonprofits this summer.The Tualatin Chamber of Commerce has been cooking something up, and it's just about ready to serve.

The Chamber has launched a new group called the Business Acceleration Team to promote new local businesses. The team is starting its first initiative as part of a planned series of events this month.

On Monday, Jo's Bar & Grill will be offering a special menu from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Diners can enjoy a pulled pork sandwich, a brisket sandwich or a cheeseburger, each with a side dish, for $12. Two dollars from each purchase will be donated to the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 3452 Auxiliary, which supports Tualatin-area veterans and their families.

“We're actually going to have open spots where people can donate, because it's not just about the food itself,” said Jerry Todd, Jo's general manager. “The VFW's going to come in and introduce themselves as well. They know that we're promoting them. … They do some great causes, so we're very supportive of them.”

Jo's is one of three local barbecue restaurants that has teamed up with a nonprofit organization through the Business Acceleration Team for this promotion.

On Aug. 8, Famous Dave's Legendary Pit Bar-B-Que will have a $12 menu, again with $2 from each purchase going to a nonprofit, Meals on Wheels People.

Slick's Big Time BBQ in Wilsonville, another Tualatin Chamber member, will hold its event on Sept. 12 to benefit Community Warehouse.

“Not only is it promoting local business, but it's helping the local community as well,” Todd explained of the series.

Chamber volunteer Carolyn Horne originally came up with the idea for a barbecue restaurant promotion. She worked together with Susan Noack, who represents Meals on Wheels People, and the other nonprofits and restaurants involved to make the promotion a reality.

“I didn't really know what it was, but I knew it would be good, because Carolyn was doing it,” Noack said. “She is a huge Chamber champion and a wonderful marketer and just enthusiastic about making people successful, and businesses successful, in Tualatin.”

Horne said she is happy to help promote Jo's.

“What I love is how this has created, now, a group of professionals coming together, sitting down … and saying, 'What do you need? How can we come alongside you and help?'” Horne said, noting that Tualatin has a number of fledgling businesses that could benefit from the support of a group like the Business Acceleration Team.

The Business Acceleration Team members hope to use this endeavor as a template for future series. Noack said plans are in the works for a similar promotion involving local beer this fall.

Jo's Bar & Grill is located at 8503 S.W. Warm Springs St., Tualatin. It is open from 11 a.m. to 2:30 a.m. every day of the week.

Pamplin Media Group, The Times' parent company, is a member of the Tualatin Chamber of Commerce. Todd said those who come into Jo's and mention reading about the promotion in The Times can receive a certificate for 10 percent off their next meal.

TIMES PHOTO: JAIME VALDEZ - Carolyn Horne and Susan Noack laugh with Jerry Todd, general manager of Jo's Bar & Grill. Horne and Noack, who are both involved in the Tualatin Chamber of Commerce, started a program called the Business Acceleration Team, which helps promote new local businesses.

By Mark Miller
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