An Arkansas couple who once ate at Olive Garden daily for nearly seven weeks plans to name their first child, due in December, Olivia Garton.
Justin and Jordan Garton, of Fort Smith, are Arkansas natives who grew up going to Olive Garden.
“I’m only the third generation on my dad’s side to be born in America,” said Jordan Garton, 26. “I just love Italian food and growing up in Arkansas that’s pretty much one of the only Italian places that we ever got to go.”
In 2015, shortly after they got married, the Gartons purchased a "never ending pasta pass" from Olive Garden. The $100 pass allows customers to have unlimited pasta and Coca-Cola soft drinks at their local Olive Garden for a limited time.
“We committed to eating there every day for six or seven weeks to get our money’s worth,” said Justin Garton, 28, an actor who works in a furniture store to make ends meet. “It saved us several hundred dollars when we really needed it.”
When Jordan Garton became pregnant with the couple’s first child, they immediately looked to give their daughter a name with Italian origins.
They passed on naming her Olive Garton, figuring it would be too much of a pun, even for them, and feared their daughter would be bullied.
When they looked into the name Olivia, they both said they knew “immediately” that was the one.
“We were able to make the joke, but a little more subtle, and it’s still a pretty name,” Jordan Garton said. “It was definitely an easy decision.”
The Gartons said their friends and family are happy with the name and get the joke quickly because they know of the couple’s love for Olive Garden.
“When they say it out loud it’s like an instant connection,” Jordan Garton said. “It’s like, ‘Oh, of course.’”
A tweet from Justin Garton showing a onesie with Olivia’s name on it that was a gift from friends caught the eye of Olive Garden officials.
We spent the first part of our lives loving @olivegarden , now we get to spend the rest of our lives loving Olivia Garton ???? #babyolivia #olivegarden #Italian #italianbaby pic.twitter.com/eDk61f870x— Justin Garton (@JustinGarton) November 20, 2017
A company spokeswoman told ABC News they have sent a “little surprise” to the Gartons already and plan to send food and gifts when Olivia arrives.
“We couldn’t have been more thrilled upon hearing about the Garton’s growing family,” said the Olive Garden spokeswoman. “We always love hearing the unique ways our guests have been able to connect with Olive Garden, and we can’t wait to meet baby Olivia.”
The Gartons also, by chance, have given their daughter unique initials. They followed a tradition in Justin Garton’s family and used one of his siblings’ names as the new baby’s middle name.
Olivia’s full name will be Olivia Michelle Garton, or O.M.G.
“I guess we just have to be those hashtag millennial parents,” Jordan Garton said with a laugh.