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It's a big deal when Chick-fil-A opens a new restaurant site.
Not only does locals have new access to one of America's most popular fast foods chains, but they also have a chance to exonerate Chick-fil-A for a year!
How? By a time-honored tradition, the chicken chain has christened the "first 1
The first 100, which dates back to 2003, occurs when the owner of a new chick-fil-a-franchise invites locals to spend the night in the parking lot, so they can be one of the first 100 customers in the store it opens the next day.
All the happy people who endure the elements get Chick-fil-A for a year coming in The shape of 52 coupons each applies to a Chick-fil-A sandwich seal.
Chick-fil-A, which recently announced its testing for food kits, says "First 100s" are famous for all sorts of crazy things that include many tents, games, dance parties and even marching bands.
And of course, there's nothing better than the moment Chick-fil-A presents these free meals!
But not only everyone is entitled to this free benefit for Chick-fil-A during every store opening today.
The last time a new Chick-fil-A opened in Wichita, Kansas, in 2012, the opportunity to win the free food was open to literally anyone who made the 100-person cut-off. But that caused a huge problem when, according to the Wichita Eagle, people from all over the country appeared.
"What happened a few years ago is that some people travel all summer through the country just to make openings, and although we love them too, we thought it would be better if local people won, to connect with our community, "said Jason Lansdown, owner of the new Maple and Ridge Street restaurants, to the newspaper.
Faced with a problem that could spiral out of control, in 2015 the chicken chain introduced new measures that many franchisees have since adapted. Now, new chick-fil-ace opens the first 100 for those who live in certain zip codes verified by checking a person's driving. Fans can first visit the Chick-fil-A website, which lists new store openings to find suitable postcodes for each location.
A chick-fil-A spokesperson told TODAY Food by email that the measure was added to ensure locals took the loot … and professional campers received no unfair advantage. "The First 100 celebration is the introduction of our franchisee into the local community," the spokesman said. "We want to make sure that the neighbors they serve in the future are seated at the table and get to know their neighborhood Chick-fil-A."
Samantha Okazaki / TODAY
In addition to the Wichita Store, which opened on August 30, Chick-fil-A has four more stores open in September are, including locations in Nashville, Tennessee; Dothan, Alabama; Findlay, Ohio; and Pasadena, Texas – with most planning to host First 100 events the night before shop opening. The chain said it opens nearly 100 stores each year, so there's a fair chance that a chick-fil-A will soon come to a chicken-loving eatery near you.