E-3 Chophouse continues tradition of offering free Thanksgiving meal to service industry workers

The E3 Chophouse will be offering a free Thanksgiving buffet to service workers in Steamboat Springs as part of a tradition that dates back seven years. (Photo of John F. Russell)

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — Jeff LaRoche, owner of E-3 Chophouse, thinks one of the best ways to say “thank you” to those who come to work in Steamboat Springs each winter is with smoked turkey and all the fixings.

“I think that the great help that we have come in from all over the world every winter is invaluable to our industry,” LaRoche said.

If you go

What: E3 Chophouse Free Thanksgiving Buffet for newcomers in the service industry
When: noon to 8 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 22
Where: E3 Chophouse, 701 Yampa St.

For the past seven years, LaRoche has hosted a Thanksgiving buffet dinner for people who are new to the community and work in the service industry. This year’s dinner will be held from noon to 8 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 22 at E-3 Chophouse, 701 Yampa St.

He held his first Thanksgiving gathering for service industry workers at The Cantina, which he owned at the time, and 75 people showed up for a menu that included turkey tacos. He said he was inspired to host the meal when he saw workers in Steamboat on J-1 visas with no connection to town, living far away from their families.

“We don’t personally have any J-1 (visa) employees, but we all benefit from them being here and taking a bit of strain off our labor supply,” LaRoche said. “These workers that come to help us need to start off on the right foot, and we want them to realize what this town is all about and we want to help them get introduced to our culture the right way.”

The meal is offered at no cost, and this year’s feast will include carved smoked turkey, several vegetable options, a salad option, mashed potatoes and gravy.

‘These workers are on a strict budget coming in and may not have family around them to celebrate a day of thanks,” LaRoche said. “We’re here to help them do that in a small way.

“We look forward to helping this year and can’t wait to do it again,” he added. “We hope to continue this for years to come.”

To reach John F. Russell, call 970-871-4209, email or follow him on Twitter @Framp1966.

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