Dallas-based Boston’s Restaurant & Sports Bar today launched its annual Boston’s Cares fundraising campaign.

Boston’s is partnering with St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital to support its efforts in pioneering research and treatment of children with cancer and other deadly diseases. In addition, several Boston’s locations have selected local charities to support during the 2012 Boston’s Cares campaign.

“Giving back to charitable organizations is a long-standing tradition of Boston’s Restaurant & Sports Bar,” says Boston’s Chief Operating Officer Mike Best. “We are passionate about the communities where our local franchisees operate, and are pleased to have donated more than $550,000 to support local charities over the past 13 years.”

The annual Boston’s Cares promotion began Jan. 9 in all Boston’s U.S. locations, and runs through Feb. 26.

Special menu dessert options include red velvet cheesecake, and, for the first time, Boston’s is introducing a gluten-free dessert: brownie a la mode. To continue with tradition, heart-shaped pizzas will be available Valentine’s Day weekend, Feb. 11-14.

Boston’s will donate $1 from each of the specialty menu desserts and heart-shaped pizzas sold, and will sell customizable paper heart valentines for $1.

Since opening its doors 50 years ago, St. Jude has made great discoveries in how to treat deadly childhood diseases like cancer, saving the lives of kids around the world. Families never pay St. Jude for treatment and St. Jude covers the cost of travel, lodging, and food for each patient and a family member.

During the past five years, 81 cents of every dollar received has supported the research and treatment at St. Jude.

“We are truly thankful to be partnering with Boston’s Restaurant & Sports Bar this year,” says Chris Boysen, vice president of field operations at ALSAC, the fundraising organization for St. Jude. “It costs $1.7 million a day to operate the hospital, and more than 75 percent of that funding comes from the public through programs like Boston’s Cares.”

Local charities also be benefiting from the Boston’s Cares 2012 fundraiser include: American Heart Association; Alliance for a Violence-Free Anoka County; Children’s Miracle Network; CHRISTUS Santa Rosa Children's Hospital; Diabetes, Inc.; Education Foundation of Collier County; Faribault Food Shelf; GuardianAngelsforSoldiersPet.org; Humane Society; Joel's Place; Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation; Kidd's Kids; Mid Ohio Food Bank; and Mike's Guardian Eagle Foundation.

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