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Partnering with Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, IHOP Selects Three Junior Chefs to Kick Off a $4 Million Fundraising Campaign for Local Children’s Hospitals and Health Charities Across the U.S.

GLENDALE, Calif., January 29, 2019  – Today, IHOP® Restaurants announced the 2019 date and a new name for its annual pancake giveaway. This year’s IHOP Free Pancake Day – Flip it Forward for Kids event will take place at IHOP restaurants nationwide on Tuesday, March 12 from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. with select locations participating until 10:00 p.m.* For one day only, guests can get a free short stack of Original Buttermilk pancakes and, in return, help kids fighting to overcome illnesses by donating to its charity partners, Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals (CMN Hospitals), The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, and Shriners Hospitals for Children.

To kick off the 14th annual IHOP Free Pancake Day campaign, the brand invited kids, ages 6-16, treated at a Children’s Miracle Network Hospital to submit their best pancake idea. Three finalists were selected for their creativity and incredible stories of bravery and perseverance. The 2019 IHOP Kid Chef team includes:

  • Coleman Giles, Manhattan Beach, Calif. Born with cardiomyopathy, Coleman underwent a heart transplant at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles at the age of seven. While waiting for his new heart, he went into cardiac arrest and relied on the Berlin Heart, an artificial heart pump to survive. Today, Coleman is 15 years old and thriving. Coleman’s pancake idea – The Hawaiian Luau – has banana slices baked into buttermilk pancakes before being topped with a grilled pineapple ring, whipped topping, a cherry, sprinkled with shredded coconut and, the most special part, his Grandpa Bob’s vanilla syrup.
  • Nellie Mainor, Salt Lake City, Utah. In 2016, Nellie was diagnosed with Dense Deposit Disease, a rare kidney disease that stops the kidneys from correctly filtering waste from the blood. She is currently in chronic kidney failure and has a blood disorder that is related to her kidney disease. Nellie was treated at Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City three days a week for dialysis and bi-weekly infusions. Now, at eight years old, she receives bi-weekly blood draws and check-ups while doing dialysis in her home for 10-hour treatments every night. She also has a feeding tube that supplies all her nutrition needs due to her chronic kidney failure. Nellie’s pancake creation – PaNellie Unicorn Pancakes – is a stack of multi-colored buttermilk pancakes topped with whipped cream and lots of sprinkles and a unicorn face made with strawberries for the ears, blueberries for the eyes, and an ice cream cone for the horn.
  • Brody Simoncini, Worcester, Mass. Six-year-old Brody was born with an abdominal wall defect that caused most of his organs to be on the outside of his body. Treated at Boston Children’s Hospital, he underwent multiple lifesaving surgeries over the course of five years, including open heart surgery and an induced coma to move his organs back inside the stomach. Today, he’s a healthy, active first-grader. Brody created OREO® Oh My Goodness, a stack of two buttermilk pancakes with OREO cookie pieces baked in and topped with vanilla icing and more cookie pieces.

The 2019 IHOP Kid Chef Team visited the IHOP Test Kitchen on Friday, January 11 to showcase their recipes before a Pancake Panel that included actress and country music superstar Jana Kramer; IHOP President Darren Rebelez; and the 2018 IHOP Kid Chef Champion, Starla Chapman. On February 25, one finalist will be named the 2019 IHOP Kid Chef Champion.

“Every year we look forward to kicking off our IHOP Free Pancake Day – Flip it Forward for Kids campaign because it combines the two things we love most – pancakes and helping our communities,” said Stephanie Peterson, Executive Director of Communications. “Our new event name reflects our desire to do good and support charities like Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. All three of our IHOP Kid Chef finalists — Coleman, Nellie and Brody — inspired us with their incredible stories of courage and wowed us with their creative pancake recipes. We can’t wait to see what they do next as the possibilities are endless, thanks in large part, to the care they received at a CMN Hospital.”

As the most anticipated food holiday of the year, IHOP Free Pancake Day has become a pop-culture phenomenon. Every dollar raised during the IHOP Free Pancake Day campaign stays local. Guests can participate in the campaign and help IHOP reach its $4 million fundraising goal by:

  • Visiting any IHOP restaurant on Tuesday, March 12, 2019 during event hours* to enjoy a free stack of IHOP’s world-famous Original Buttermilk pancakes and donating to the featured charity.
  • Purchasing a wall icon now through March 12, 2019 to show support. Guests who buy a $5 wall icon will receive a $5 coupon good for a future purchase of $10 or more (valid at participating restaurants only.)**
  • Making an in-restaurant cash contribution or on-check donation at any IHOP restaurant between now and March 31, 2019.

For more information on IHOP Free Pancake Day and the IHOP Kid Culinary Team, including participating restaurant hours and charity support, visit

Contact [email protected] to coordinate IHOP or charity spokesperson interviews, request gift card requests for audience giveaways, arrange an in-studio pancake demonstration, or coordinate a remote live-feed from an IHOP location.

* Limit one offer per guest. One free short stack of Buttermilk Pancakes on March 12, 2019 from 7 a.m. – 7 p.m.; participating restaurants and hours may vary. Check with your local IHOP restaurant for details. Dine-in only.

** Issuance and redemption of coupons at participating restaurants only. Redemption expires Sunday, March 31, 2019 unless otherwise stated.

For 60 years, IHOP has been a leader, innovator and expert in all things breakfast, any time of day. The chain offers 65 different signature, fresh, made-to-order breakfast options, a wide selection of popular lunch and dinner items as well as meals under 600 calories. IHOP restaurants offer guests an affordable, everyday dining experience with warm and friendly service. Today, there are more than 1,800 IHOP restaurants around the world, including restaurants in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Guam as well as Canada, Mexico, Guatemala, Panama, Lebanon, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Qatar, Thailand and India. IHOP restaurants are franchised by affiliates of Glendale, Calif.-based Dine Brands Global, Inc. (NYSE:  DIN).

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 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 various 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, and learn about your member hospital, at and

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society® (LLS) is the world's largest voluntary health agency dedicated to blood cancer. The LLS mission: Cure leukemia, lymphoma, multiple 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 Rye Brook, NY, LLS has chapters throughout the United States and Canada. To learn more, visit Patients should contact the Information Resource Center at (800) 955-4572, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. ET.

About Shriners Hospitals for Children®
Shriners Hospitals for Children is a system of 22 health care facilities dedicated to improving the lives of children by providing specialty pediatric care, innovative research and outstanding teaching programs. Children up to the age of 18 with orthopaedic conditions, burns, spinal cord injuries and cleft lip and palate are eligible for admission and receive all care in a family-centered environment regardless of the families' ability to pay. For more information visit:

Oreo® and the Oreo Wafer Design are registered trademarks of Mondelez International Group.