Celebrating National Pancake Day with free pancakes

Posted: Updated:
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -

Pancakes are not just for breakfast, especially on this day! That's because IHOP restaurants are offering free pancakes all day long Tuesday, until 10 p.m.

March 3 marks IHOP's National Pancake Day, and guests all over the country will be able to enjoy one free short stack of buttermilk pancakes. The pancake fundraiser will benefit the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals and other charities in the Phoenix area.

To help spread the word about this worthy cause, some beauty queens stopped by their local IHOPs to flip pancakes and serve guests.

"We work so closely with Phoenix Children's Hospital. We love working with the kids and the families. So being out, to encourage people to eat pancakes and raise some money is why we're out here today," says Katelyn Niemiec, Miss North Phoenix. "We love to do all that we can."

This year, IHOP Restaurants is celebrating a "Decade of Giving" in honor of the tenth anniversary of National Pancake Day. To commemorate this milestone, IHOP Restaurants hopes to raise $3.5 million, which would bring the total raised to nearly $20 million in the ten years since National Pancake Day began.

To find a local IHOP restaurant or to donate online, visit www.ihoppancakeday.com. For every delicious short stack of buttermilk pancakes served on National Pancake Day, guests are invited to make a donation to the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals.

Last year, pancake lovers donated nearly $3 million to children's charities. And IHOP Restaurants served nearly 4.2 million free pancakes on National Pancake Day 2014. All of the free pancakes served on National Pancake Day 2014 would have created a stack more than 12 miles high.

The money raised goes to Children's Miracle Network Hospitals, Shriners Hospitals for Children, The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and Other local charities

In 2015, National Pancake Day continues to spread throughout the world. For the second year in a row, IHOP restaurants in Canada and Mexico will participate in the fundraiser, joined for the first time by IHOP restaurants in the Philippines. IHOP restaurants in Canada will again support the Children's Miracle Network and IHOP restaurants in Mexico will raise money for Asociación Mexicana de Ayuda a Niños con Cáncer, (AMANC) that provides accommodations and resources to children undergoing treatment for cancer and their families. IHOP restaurants in the Philippines will be raising funds for The Kythe Foundation, which provides children with cancer and chronic illness opportunities to learn, play and grow while they are in the hospital.

"It's both incredible and incredibly gratifying that we are now marking a full decade of National Pancake Day, which has become not only a favorite of guests, but of our franchisees and team members," said Julia Stewart, Interim President, International House of Pancakes, LLC. "Little did we dream, ten years ago, that thanks to the generosity of our guests, we would be able to raise $16 million, one short stack at a time, and make a substantial difference in the lives of the children in our local communities!"

"It is also thrilling to see National Pancake Day grow into International Pancake Day, and to see how truly global the spirit of giving back to the community is," added Stewart. "Now that the tradition has become established in Canada and Mexico, we look forward to welcoming our restaurants in the Philippines to this worldwide effort, and to continuing this international growth for many decades to come."

For more information on National Pancake Day or to learn more about Children's Miracle Network Hospitals and to make a donation, please visit www.ihoppancakeday.com.

ABOUT CHILDREN'S MIRACLE NETWORK HOSPITALS

Children's Miracle Network Hospitals® raises funds and awareness for 170 member hospitals that provide 32 million treatments each year to kids across the U.S. and Canada. Donations - including all those made on IHOP National Pancake Day - stay local to fund critical treatments and healthcare services, pediatric medical equipment and charitable care. Since 1983, Children's Miracle Network Hospitals has raised more than $5 billion, most of it $1 at a time through the charity's Miracle Balloon icon. Its fundraising partners and programs support the nonprofit's mission to save and improve the lives of as many children as possible. Find out why children's hospitals need community support, identify your member hospital and learn how you can Put Your Money Where the Miracles Are, at CMNHospitals.org.

ABOUT SHRINERS HOSPITALS FOR CHILDREN

Shriners Hospitals for Children is changing lives every day through innovative pediatric specialty care, world-class research and outstanding medical education. Our 23 facilities, located in the United States, Canada and Mexico, provide advanced care for children with orthopedic conditions, burns, spinal cord injuries, and cleft lip and palate. Learn more at www.shrinershospitalsforchildren.org.

ABOUT THE LEUKEMIA & LYMPHOMA SOCIETY

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society® (LLS) is the world's largest voluntary health agency dedicated to blood cancer. The LLS mission: Cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin's disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families. LLS funds lifesaving blood cancer research around the world, provides free information and support services, and is the voice for all blood cancer patients seeking access to quality, affordable, coordinated care. Founded in 1949 and headquartered in White Plains, NY, LLS has chapters throughout the United States and Canada. To learn more, visit www.LLS.org.

For more information or to find an IHOP restaurant near you, please visit www.IHOP.com.

Pancake Day is actually a tradition that dates back several centuries to when the English prepared for fasting during Lent. Strict rules prohibited the eating of all dairy products during Lent, so pancakes were made to use up the supply of eggs, milk, butter and other dairy products. Hence the name Pancake Tuesday, or Shrove Tuesday.