First Steak 'n Shake Opens in Manhattan

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Times Square, NEW YORK– The opening of Manhattan’s first Steak 'n Shake and promise of free food drew a crowd that formed a line 15 hours before the restaurant opened its doors Thursday, Jan. 19.

Steak 'n Shake offered a free weekly meal for a year to the first 150 customers in line. Naturally, several King’s students were some of the first to take advantage of the offer.

Five students from The King’s College arrived at 4:30 pm Wednesday to wait in line overnight. The staff of Steak 'n Shake was happy to see their first customers arrive so early.

“They were so friendly," Amber Kakepoto (‘15) said. “They took pictures with us, and they gave us tarps to sleep under. They wanted to make sure that no one would cut us in line.”

By eight o’clock Wednesday night, a crowd began to form. Many anticipated the wait, but some were not ready for the nonstop rain that started at nine.

Rain soaked the clothes, blankets, homework, backpacks and bags that the students brought with them. Sleep was not a reasonable option but neither was failure when free food was at stake (or in this case, was steak).

Reporters from several news organizations like The Gothamist and The New York Post came around seven on Thursday morning to interview those waiting in the lengthy line. The new employees arrived and went through a brief training process as the staff prepared to open.

At 10 am, Steak 'n Shake allowed the first group of people to enter and order a free burger, a milkshake and fries. They also received the long-awaited coupon book for a year’s worth of free Steak 'n Shake meals.

“It was worth it," Kakepoto said. "We got free food."

CityTaylor Lindsay