Local restaurant continues tradition of donating to children’s hospital

Published: Feb. 1, 2023 at 5:48 PM CST|Updated: Feb. 1, 2023 at 7:53 PM CST
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MAMMOTH SPRING, Ark. (KAIT) - Fred’s Fish House in Mammoth Spring is known for its fish, hushpuppies, and its annual tradition.

While being open for many years, the restaurant has also been raising thousands of dollars for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

Feb. 1 was the annual “St. Jude’s Day” at Fred’s. All money made on Tuesday will go back to the hospital.

The restaurant is family owned and operated. Manager Derek McCradic says they have a connection to the hospital, and that’s why the fundraiser continues to be held every year.

“We have always donated to them since this place has started up, but it really became a connection when one of my first cousins, Jesse, got diagnosed with cancer at a young age in about 1994,” McCradic said. “He had terminal cancer, and they never gave us a bill.”

Located on Main Street, the restaurant knew firsthand how this week’s winter weather could affect their money-raising efforts but knew the area would show up.

“No matter what. Rain or shine. This is one of the busiest days we have every year. Probably just because all the community wants to pitch in all they can, everyone around, surrounding cities do what they can to help out.”

McCradic says they’re always able to raise thousands of dollars for the hospital.

“In the past few years, we usually make about $10,000. We kind of were a little slower in the past few years because of COVID, but we still kept those totals up.”