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Where kids eat free in the SCV

Finances: Families can still enjoy dinners out with popular offer

Posted: August 26, 2011 1:30 a.m.
Updated: August 26, 2011 1:30 a.m.

Server Francisco Gonzalez, right, takes an order from Taylor Beckham, 10, left, and her mother, Jennifer, at La Cocina.

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Times are tight for most Americans. In families with children, expenses can really add up. Often the first thing to go from the family budget is dinner outside the home.


For Bianca Bonner Shines, a full-time mom and nursing student in Saugus, local “kids-eat-free” deals offers a way to enjoy the occasional restaurant meal with her husband and 5-year-old son Charlie.


“We don’t eat out a whole lot, because it’s expensive,” Bonner Shines said. “We do go to La Cocina on Tuesdays. They have great food, but if you don’t get there early, by 4:30 (p.m.), the wait can be up to an hour.”
The kids-eat-free night at La Cocina, instituted in 1997, has dramatically increased in popularity in 2011, noted manager Carlos Lopez.


La Cocina offers a free meal to kids 12 and under with the purchase of an adult meal.


“I’ve noticed a good 25 to 35 more families coming in. The last year, it was kind of steady, but now, all of a sudden, I’m really noticing it,” he said. “It’s the economy. If you give a little extra, it really helps people.”


La Cocina is not the only dining destination for the Shines family.


“We also like Islands on kids-eat-free nights. My son likes their burgers,” Bonner Shines said.


According to the Valencia Islands manager Robert Rivera, the Tuesday night deal, available from 4 p.m. until close, is extremely well-attended.


Rivera considers the offer a form of goodwill toward the restaurant's customers.


“This way, parents can take kids out and enjoy dinner themselves,” Rivera said. “Everyone should get a little treat during tough economic times.”


Kids-eat-free nights are also a way to improve business, as Kevin Bodeau, manager of Oggi’s Pizza and Brewing Company in Canyon Country, illustrated. The restaurant currently offers such a deal on Mondays and Tuesdays; after Monday Night Football starts Sept. 12, the offer will only be available on Tuesdays.


“We’ve been doing kids-eat-free nights for years. We were trying to bring in more parents. We figure if they could get their kids meal free, they would come in. It helps out on slow days,” he said. “Plus, we know times have been hard lately, so we like to help people out. We’ve had a few parents say thanks, this really helps us out. We love the positive feedback.”


Most kids-eat-free specials cater to children 12 and under, offering a free child’s entrée with the purchase of an adult entrée.


Some restaurants also require the purchase of a beverage or have an age limit of 10 and under.


Below is a list of some of the many restaurants you can take your kids for a free meal in the Santa Clarita Valley.

All Stars Sports Bar

28200 Bouquet Canyon Road, Santa Clarita
(661) 296-8000
Kids 12 and under eat free Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays, all day, with purchase of adult meal

Chick-Fil-A

24180 Magic Mountain Parkway, Valencia
(661) 799-3663
Kids eat free Tuesdays, 5 to 8 p.m., with the purchase of an adult meal combo

Chipotle Grill

24405 Town Center Drive, Santa Clarita
(661) 284-2461
Kids 2-11 eat free Mondays, with the purchase of an adult entrée, all day, during the month of August only

Coco’s Bakery Restaurant

24930 W. Pico Blvd.,
Santa Clarita
(661) 254-2776
Kids 10 and under eat free Tuesdays and Wednesdays, after 4 p.m., with the purchase of an adult entrée

Denny’s Restaurants

25341 N. Chiquella Lane, Santa Clarita (and all locations throughout the Santa Clarita Valley)
(661) 259-4415
Kids 10 and under eat free Tuesdays, from 4 to 10 p.m., with the purchase of an adult meal from regular and soft drink, get two free kids meals

El Torito Mexican Restaurant & Cantina

27510 The Old Road,
Valencia
(661) 254-2994
Kids 2-12 eat free Wednesdays, with the purchase of an adult entrée

Islands

24180 Valencia Blvd.,
Valencia
(661) 284-5903
Kids 12 and under eat free Tuesdays, 4-9 p.m., with the purchase of an adult entrée get two free kids meals

La Cocina Bar & Grill

28022 Seco Canyon Road, Saugus
(661) 297-4546 
Kids 12 and under eat free every Tuesday, 4 p.m. to close, with the purchase of an adult entrée of $7.95 or higher

Margaritas Mexican Restaurant

23320 Valencia Blvd,
Valencia
(661) 255-1136
Kids 10 and under eat free every Tuesday, 11 a.m.-close, with the purchase of an adult entrée

Oggi’s Pizza and Brewing Company

18810 Soledad Canyon Road, Canyon Country
(661) 252-7883
Kids 12 and under eat free Mondays (until Monday Night Football starts Sept. 12) and Tuesdays, 4 p.m.-close, with the purchase of an adult entrée and a child’s drink.

Route 66 Classic Grill

18730 Soledad Canyon Road, Canyon Country
(661) 298-1494
Kids 12 and under eat free every Tuesday, all day, with the purchase of an adult entrée

Sisley Italian Kitchen

24202 W. Valencia Blvd., Valencia
(661) 287-4444
Kids 2-10 eat free Sunday–Wednesday, all day, with the purchase of an adult entrée

Thai Dishes

23328 Valencia Blvd.,
Valencia
(661) 253-3663
Kids 10 and under eat free every Monday, 5 p.m. to close, with the purchase of an adult entrée

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