Waffle House will be giving away free waffles, hash browns and coffee on Monday to the fans of the winning school in Saturday’s Duke vs. UNC rivalry game.
The Waffle House Wager giveaway will last from 7 a.m. until 9 p.m. at either the 9th Street location in Durham or the East Franklin Street location in Chapel Hill.
UNC and Duke face off this Saturday and the stakes are high. Waffle house is hosting the Waffle Wager and will serve the winning team's school free waffles in addition to giving them a scholarship.
This year is the first time Waffle House has ever held the wager for a college basketball game instead of football.
“We’re excited to bring the Waffle Wager to college basketball,” Walt Ehmer, Waffle House CEO, said in a press release. “And the Carolina-Duke rivalry is the highlight of the college regular season; therefore it’s the best choice to tip off a friendly basketball wager.”
The chance of free food raises the stakes for the game Saturday, on top of Duke looking for revenge and the NCAA Tournament approaching.
UNC sophomore Lynn Nguyen is a big fan of both Waffle House and UNC basketball.
“Honestly now I want to win even more,” Nguyen said. “Having waffles involved amps it up a lot.”
In addition to free food, Waffle House is also giving the winning school a donation of $10,000 for the general scholarship fund.
So far, Waffle House has done similar events in the past and in total has served fans over 8,100 waffles, 5,100 orders of hash browns and 6,000 cups of coffee and given out $35,000 in scholarship money.
The Waffle Wager contest started in 2013 in partnership with Waffle House’s passionate suppliers — Basic American Foods, C.H. Guenther & Son, Inc. and Royal Cup Coffee and Tea — said Pat Warner, Waffle House director of public relations and external affairs .
“We like to have fun at Waffle House,” Warner said. “The wager is a fun way to add to the game. It adds a little extra celebration.”
Waffle House and their partners chose the UNC vs. Duke game on Saturday because of the passionate fan bases at both schools.
“We know the followers of these teams are fanatical,” Dale Tremblay, C.H. Guenther CEO said in a press release. “And adding in the Waffle Wager gives the winners even more bragging rights.”
Both Waffle House locations have started to prep for Monday by already mixing waffle batter and scheduling extra staff.
LaKetta Knapp, Unit Manager of the Chapel Hill Waffle House, said every Waffle House in the area will send two employees to whichever location wins. If UNC wins, two employees from the Durham location will have to come serve UNC students, and vice versa.
“We tend to schedule a whole lot more people than we need, just in case,” Knapp said.
The crowds are expected to be steady all day long, Warner said. The longest lines will probably be in the morning and then once classes let out in the afternoon.
There’s no limit on the amount of people Waffle House will serve, only a time limit. The restaurant will start cutting the line off around 9 p.m.
Waffle House won’t be checking student IDs or proof that a customer is actually a fan of the respective team at the door. Anyone who goes to either location will get free waffles.
Matthew Dalrymple, a first-year at UNC, has been looking forward to Saturday’s game for weeks.
“For free waffles? I would wait in line for two hours," Dalrymple said. "Gotta have free waffles."
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