Hooters is turning 30 on Friday (does that make the chain too old to be on its own wait staff?), and this week the titillating wing house is having a weeklong series of deals and celebrations leading up to its milestone birthday.
On Friday, numbered tickets will be distributed to party guests at all 452 locations for an 8 p.m. national TV reveal on FOX Sports 1, when ex-Bucs coach Jon Grudin announces one winner at each location of free chicken wings for a year.
The now internationally famous Hooters brand got its start here in Clearwater at 2800 Gulf-to-Bay Blvd. in 1983. The idea really took off when one of the co-founders, Ed Droste, swam ashore to Clearwater Beach from a boat, his business card in a plastic bag. He offered the winner of the Jose Cuervo Bikini Contest, Lynne Austin, a spot on the inaugural Hooters billboard. Austin went on to become Playboy's Playmate of the Month for July 1986.
Austin will be at the original Hooters on Friday, along with numerous other original Hooters Girls, and soul singer Justin Rhodes will perform. Miss Hooters International 2013 Marissa Raisor, who is also the Hooters Calendar cover girl for 2014, will be there too, for the calendar signing 6 to 8 p.m. Friday.