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Indulge in a free sugar cookie on Tax Day

Indulge in a free sugar cookie on Tax Day

(WXIA) -- There's nothing sweet about completing your taxes -- but Great American Cookies wants to change that.

On Wednesday, Apr. 15, all Atlanta-area Great American Cookies locations will offer each customer a free sugar cookie. It will be the third time the cookie chain has offered a little sweet relief on Tax Day.

"Only in the world of Great American Cookies is Tax Day this enjoyable," Great American Cookies Brand VP David Kaiser said in a release. "After all those tax forms and number crunching, we think everyone deserves a treat to savor."

No purchase or proof of completed taxes is necessary to take advantage of the free cookie promotion.

Participating locations in metro Atlanta include:

Atlanta
* Atlantic Station
* Centennial Olympic Park
* Greenbriar Mall
* Lenox Square
* Peachtree Center

Clarke County
* Georgia Square Mall

Clayton County
* Southlake Mall

Free short stack at IHOP for National Pancake Day

Free short stack at IHOP for National Pancake Day

(WXIA) -- Tuesday is National Pancake Day, and all Atlanta-area IHOP locations are celebrating by offering free short stacks to customers who support Children's Miracle Network.

Every year, IHOP restaurants raise money for children's hospitals nationwide, including Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, on National Pancake Day. Diners have the option of making a donation in exchange for free buttermilk pancakes.

Reigning Miss Georgia Maggie Bridges stopped by the IHOP in Chamblee Tuesday morning, where she served breakfast and spoke with Children's Miracle Network Champion Sutton Burnett. Other local Miracle Children visited the IHOP restaurants in Peachtree City, Smyrna and Woodstock.

Visit ihoppancakeday.com to find a participating IHOP location near you.

Teen with cerebral palsy takes mission trip

Teen with cerebral palsy takes mission trip

ROME, Ga. -- The next time you feel sorry for yourself or think you can't do something, remember Andrew Cook.

Andrew, an 18-year-old Rome resident, was born with cerebral palsy. He didn't learn to walk -- with the help of a walker -- until he was 10.

The teen worked hard this summer raising money so he could take a church mission trip to Nicaragua, where he could help deliver food and supplies to poor villages. Andrew can't read or write, but he dictated a fundraising letter for his family to send out.

Andrew's mother Karen captured a great moment during the trip. Her son, despite his unsteady legs, walked all the way across a ravine on a log.

Karen said Andrew was so proud and happy to make the trip, help people and challenge himself.

RELATED | More Atlanta Alive 'moments'

Kroger raises $232K for Children's Miracle Network

Kroger raises $232K for Children's Miracle Network

(WXIA) -- Kroger customers in metro Atlanta recently showed that they are a charitable bunch.

During the final two weeks in May, shoppers raised $232,000 for the Children's Miracle Network through the Miracle Balloons promotion.

For only $1, a customer could purchase a paper balloon to hang in a local Kroger. All proceeds from the fundraiser went directly to Children's Miracle Network hospitals and health networks, such as Children's Hospital of Georgia in Augusta and Children's Healthcare of Atlanta.

"Kroger customers consistently show their care for our communities by constantly going above and beyond with their charitable donations," Glynn Jenkins, spokesperson for Kroger's Atlanta division, said in a release. "Through their support of the Miracle Balloons program, we can continue to make a difference in the lives of children."

Eat at Chili's to help Tenn. tornado victims

Eat at Chili's to help Tenn. tornado victims

(WXIA) -- Several Southern states were slammed by severe weather earlier this week, including Lincoln County, Tenn., which experienced a devastating tornado.

Those who want to contribute to the community's rebuilding fund can now do so, simply by eating at Chili's.

On Sunday, May 4, more than 60 Chili's restaurants in Georgia and Tennessee will contribute 10 percent of the day's earnings to the Lincoln County Disaster Relief Fund.

Chili's diners can also make monetary donations by adding extra money to their check totals.

Visit chilis.com to find your nearest Chili's.

Celebrating MLK Day

Celebrating MLK Day

(WXIA) -- Many metro Atlanta residents and companies chose to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day by serving their communities.

RELATED | Martin Luther King Jr. Day events

Hosea Feed the Hungry estimates it will feed 10,000 families during its MLK Day meal, which began at 10 a.m. at the Georgia International Convention Center in College Park.

More than 3,000 people rolled up their sleeves to serve with Hands On Atlanta, beautifying such areas as City of Refuge and Chastain Memorial Park.

Georgia Power employees spent the day volunteering at Lutheran Towers, a housing development for seniors in Midtown Atlanta. They also assembled, labeled and distributed collection boxes at Rockdale Emergency Relief in Conyers.

Nominees needed for 11Alive Community Service Awards

Nominees needed for 11Alive Community Service Awards

(WXIA) -- Every year, 11Alive News honors extraordinary metro Atlanta residents who make a daily difference in the community.

The annual Community Service Awards recognize some of the area's unsung heroes.

11Alive is accepting nominees for the 39th annual Community Service Awards. This year's dinner and awards ceremony will be held Saturday, Apr. 22. Proceeds benefit a local charity; the 2014 recipient is the Ron Clark Academy.

To nominate a deserving person, visit 11Alive.com/CSA and click on the nomination form link at the top of the page. The deadline is Jan. 10.