BBQ Benefit To He Hosted For Local Bartender’s Medical Expenses
by James Coulter
A bartender beloved by many patrons and residents will be honored with a barbecue benefit hosted in her honor at Gary’s Grove in Winter Haven.
On Sat. Jan. 16, a benefit will be hosted for JoAnne “JoJo” Simmons, a bartender at Gary’s Grove, to help cover her medical expenses. Jojo recently suffered a brain aneurysm and was required to undergo three surgeries in seven days.
“It is a local community coming together for someone that we love, who have taken care of us over the years,” said Nicole Brown, a resident for nearly 15 years and close friend of JoJo’s.
Barbecue dinner plates will be served by Kick Yo Butt BBQ, a local award-winning barbecue team. Raffles will also be hosted for a chance for attendees to enter and win many prizes.
Proceeds from the dinners and raffles will cover JoJo’s medical expenses and cost of living when she leaves the hospital.
“We wanted to take care of her, help her with her medical expenses, given the multiple surgeries and severity of her condition,” Brown said.
Currently, expectations are high. Many community members have volunteered their time and efforts to prepare for the benefit. Kick Yo Butt will be donating plates of barbecue dinners, and small businesses have donated merchandise to create gift baskets for the raffle.
“They have pulled together to show support for her any way that they can,” Brown said. “She has always taken care of us, so we want to make sure she is loved and taken care of her as well.”
The benefit will be hosted on Sat., Jan. 16 from 3 pm to 10pm. It will be held at Gary’s Grove Lounge, located at 2995 Cypress Gardens Rd, Winter Haven, FL 33884.