Columbia, SC (WLTX) -- A local restaurant is helping to make the time pass a little quicker for those putting in the hours on this national holiday.
Working on Labor Day just got a little bit easier for these member of the Columbia Fire Department. As a group of men and women who serve the community three hundred and sixty five days a year, fire fighting is a labor of love, even on Labor Day.
"Anytime the community reaches out to the fire department we express our deep thanks," Battalion Chief Christopher Kip says he received a call from the Italian restaurant The Olive Garden and was surprised at the news on the other end.
"At first thought they wanted to come by and bring dinner for three or four guys. We called back and found out they wanted to feed twenty five! I think if you ask any of these guys they would say it made their day"
Around the Midlands, Olive Garden team members served Lasagna, salad, and of course bread sticks firefighters, police officers and hospital staff who keep the community safe every day.
"This is our way of giving back to our community. We chose this location because they do a great job for us and we just want to say thanks," Umut Engin says this is the restaurant's 11th year in a row serving up dishes on Labor Day.
But today didn't go completely as planned. Right as dinner was served the firefighters had to run out on call.
"That's what they do for us everyday is have to stop what they do. They risk their lives of us. Thank God it wasn't a very long one they got back very quickly," said Engin.
While it was no day on the water, firefighters like Kip says the good eats certainly makes working on a holiday more enjoyable.
"It's really touching and it means alot. Especially on a day like Labor Day which honors those who are working," said Kip.
This year, more than 750 Olive Garden restaurants nationwide will deliver and serve special lunches to honor firefighters, police officers and hospital staff.