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National Restaurant Association - Black Bear Diner: On the prowl to provide better nutrition

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Black Bear Diner: On the prowl to provide better nutrition

In the latest installment of this series, the National Restaurant Association profiles Black Bear Diner and some of the healthful items it offers as a member of the Kids LiveWellSM program.

Proving it's not just your average "bear," Black Bear Diner is seeking to appeal to its customers' discerning tastes and their appreciation for healthful dining.

"We want to continue to do healthful programs for kids, and the National Restaurant Association's Kids LiveWell program offers more choices for parents," says Jolisa Johnson, director of marketing of the Mt. Shasta, Calif.-based chain. "It's important that kids be active and eat well."

Popular with families since its debut in 1995, the 53-unit chain currently is offering three new healthful meals targeted to children, or "cubs," as the company calls them.

The items, which are served all day, are: the Cubs' scrambler, a scrambled egg made with diced ham and cheese and served with a slice of 12-grain toast, fruit and fresh-squeezed orange juice. It is the most-ordered of the three items, Johnson says. The other two items are the Cubs' turkey dinner, featuring sliced turkey with turkey gravy, steamed broccoli, applesauce and orange juice; and the Cubs' chicken quesadilla, which consists of diced chicken and cheese on a whole wheat tortilla with fresh fruit and applesauce. The fruit cup contains red grapes and cantaloupe and honeydew melon chunks.

In addition to promoting the items with window stickers and special menus filled with activities at all of its stores, Black Bear also markets them on its website at www.blackbeardiner.com.

The Kids LiveWell program, which debuted last year, has more than quadrupled its membership in that time. The program was created in partnership with San Diego-based nutrition consultancy Healthy Dining. It promotes menu items that meet qualifying criteria based on leading health organizations' scientific recommendations. Consumers can identify those healthful menu items by visiting healthydiningfinder.com.

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