“Polar Vortex Challenge” has lunch crowd eating outside

"Free" lunch comes at the cost of comfort at Hot Table

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Whoever said that there is no such thing as a free lunch had never visited the Hot Table at Tower Square in Springfield during the “Polar Vortex Challenge!” But just because lunch was free of cost Monday afternoon, it didn’t mean that it came easy. In order to eat for free, you had to consume it outside on the patio, in single-digit temperatures, and with light snow coming down.

The café has been running the promotion for the last three years, and if the lure of a free lunch wasn’t enough to get you to eat outside, all the money that Hot Table would otherwise have made on the sales of food, they are donating to the Springfield Rescue Mission. Theresa Turner of Westfield has been doing the “Polar Vortex Challenge” with her friends since the promotion started.

“Why not? You’re alive, you might as well live, right? It’s just lunch- it’s a little cold, it’s free, yes? And the food couldn’t be any better,” Turner said.

The lure of a free lunch isn’t quite for everyone, as some diners preferred to just pay, and eat their lunch in heated comfort.

The challenge started at 11:00 Monday morning, and wrapped up at 2:00 P.M.

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