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High 5: Cooking Up Life Lessons That Stick At Sticky Bird

FARMINGTON, Utah – A business in Davis County seems like any other fast, casual chicken restaurant, but what happens behind the scenes is the real recipe for a better life for so many who had nowhere to turn.

You might not give your lunchtime selection a second thought. Delicious chicken, fries, coleslaw – the menu sounds like a no-brainer. But those who back Sticky Bird, 504 Station Pkwy., Farmington, know that choosing this place over any other chain means you’re helping save a life.

“They help each other grow in their recovery and their lives, and it’s super awesome,” said the restaurant’s general manager, Christina Racca. “They’ve also helped me grow, as well.”

Located on Station Parkway just across I-15 from Lagoon, Sticky Bird Restaurant is a part of Red Barn Farms’ Red Barn Academy, which teaches business skills to former convicts and addicts.

They want their friends and family and society as a whole to see them not for what they’ve done, but for who they are: people working to get well.

“The mission is to ultimately save lives,” said Dominick Ameral, Sticky Bird’s kitchen manager.

He’s just one of the success stories in the 2-year program to cook up some positivity while tossing in some life skills for a brighter future.

“I know where my life would be if I didn’t come here, and it’s the lowest of the low,” Ameral said. “I was a very broken person when I got to the academy. Now, I just see that the possibilities for my future are endless right now.”

He said his family sees the difference, too.

“Just to see them say how proud they were of me, and to see my mom cry and everything like that, it really touches my heart,” Ameral said. “I know I’m in the right place.”

“For everybody that comes in the program after me, I get to pass along that knowledge that I’ve learned through my stay at the academy,” he added.

Benjamin Chournos with the Red Barn Academy said working at Sticky Bird is more than just a job.

“It builds a career,” he said. “Sticky bird is going to be. phenomenal avenue to build on the culinary experience to help these guys get moving.”

For more information, visit redbarnfarms.org.

Do you know someone doing good in our community? A friend or family member building up neighbors or a coworker giving selflessly? Click here to nominate them for a KSL High 5. 

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