Tropical Smoothie Cafe offering free 'Sunshine Smoothies' to flip flop wearers on Friday

Flip Flop Day is Friday (Source: Tropical Smoothie Cafe)

A table filled with laughter, many would just see a family enjoying smoothies together, but it was so much more than that for Suzanne Gesing.

"I feel like it’s just meant to be,” Gesing said.

She said every second she gets to spend with her son Peyton is a blessing.

Peyton's had a long battle with neuroblastoma. He's endured chemo, surgeries and countless hospital visits, but Camp Sunshine gives him a chance to just be a kid.

"Most of the camps are kind of singled out to him, but they reach out to the siblings too and to me, and so that's a big deal," Gesing said.

The whole family gets to enjoy the camp, and one of the big sponsors is Tropical Smoothie, where Gesing happens to work.

"I don't know many companies that would do that or any restaurants,” Gesing said. “I think it's exciting."

Gesing was busy whipping up a watermelon mojito ahead of National Flip Flop Day, a day of donations.

"All my kids and all their friends are coming," Gesing said.

The money goes to help send kids, just like Peyton, to Maine where they can share their stories with others who understand.

"He'll be around people that have the same kind of problem that he has,” Gesing said. “He's very shy so I think that he'll kind of have something in common with them."

She’s heard a special bond is formed between the kids and their families, but it's also a heartwarming time for volunteers.

"Camp Sunshine just makes me light up when I hear somebody say it because it just gives you such a special feeling inside," said former volunteer Kerry Blome.

Blome volunteered every summer for four years back in the early 90's.

As Peyton flipped through the scrapbook looking at her old pictures, she was reminded that those were some of her best days.

"It's not a camp just about a sick child, it's a camp that's for the whole entire family to enjoy,” Gesing said. “Cancer and other sickness affect the whole family and I think that's what makes Camp Sunshine so special."

The restaurant said customers wearing flip flops can stop by between 2 and 7 p.m. Friday June 15 to enjoy a free, limited edition Sunshine Smoothie.

No coupon or purchase is needed to get the free special smoothie, which is a combination of orange, banana, pineapple and mango.

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