Earning her biggest tip yet, Ciara Deering served her way to the top spot as best server in the 2023 Best of Airdrie Readers’ Choice awards.
Thanks to an energetic and positive attitude, it’s not surprising that Deering came home with the gold medal. She will be celebrating her 10-year anniversary with Original Joe’s this summer, and winning this award is the cherry on top of an already exciting time with the bar and restaurant.
With over a decade of serving experience, her skills have allowed her to make close connections with the people and customers she works with. Believing in the power of vulnerability and transparency, Deering makes it a priority to be honest and up front about who she is and what she brings to the table – literally and figuratively.
She said with an ever-digitalized world meaning people can seem a bit more “robotic” at times, she values the real-life interactions that serving has provided her over the years.
“I think people really like to see the humans in other humans,” she said.
Wanting to make sure the restaurant is a welcoming environment, Deering greets everyone who arrives at Original Joe’s as if she already knows them. She hopes the customers she serves will feel their feedback is taken seriously and be addressed head-on, and wants everyone to feel like they are part of the crew.
As someone who enjoys being in service to others, Deering’s role as a server has come naturally. She finds it rewarding to take care of the people she’s in charge of.
Deering wasn’t aware that she was nominated for the best server award until halfway through the contest’s voting period. It was the kitchen crew that notified her she was in the running for the award. After finding out, Deering said it felt it was important that if others were advocating for her, she should advocate for herself.
Once the results of the contest were released, Deering was in a state of disbelief.
“When I won, I was like, ‘Oh my god I did it,’” she said.
Thinking it’s a cool experience to win the accolade at the same time as her 10-year anniversary at OJ's, she noted the award is just for fun but still important to her. She said this is an opportunity to highlight her achievements.
“Honestly, it’s just bragging rights at the end of the day,” she said, laughing.
Deering added she loves the city of Airdrie and the people she works with every shift. She noted that her regular customers are considered dear friends of hers, and that they have built a strong bond throughout her tenure at Original Joe’s.
Deering is thankful for the person who nominated her, and for everyone who took the time to vote in this year’s contest.
“Thank you for nominating me – whoever it was,” she said. “And to all of my regulars, friends and family that have supported me, thank you so much. This is really exciting.”