Lifestyle & Human Interest

Waitress Stunned When She Sees Tip of $5,000 on Slow Night at Restaurant


A Massachusetts waitress received a generous $5,000 tip from a local businessman who hopes the act of kindness will be passed on throughout the year.

Jennifer Navaria works as a server at the Seaglass Restaurant in Salisbury, Massachusetts.

On a slow Saturday night, not long before closing time, car dealership owner Ernie Boch Jr. came inside with a friend for a meal.

Navaria told WCVB that Boch left her an incredible $5,000 tip on his $157.56 dollar bill.

At first, Navaria thought she was reading the amount incorrectly, confused as to whether or not the tip was $50 or, indeed, $5,000.

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“I was, like, ‘Oh, wait a minute,’ so then I looked down again and I saw it was four digits, then a decimal point,” Navaria said. “I said, ‘You made my night,’ but, really, he made my month.”

Boch later said he was inspired to leave the tip in response to a $2,020 tip that actor and singer Donnie Wahlberg left for a server on New Year’s Day, the amount signifying the new year.

“Donnie, your move,” Boch wrote on top of the receipt he left for Navaria.

‘The waiters and waitresses, they’re such fine people,” Boch told WCVB. “It really hit me and she was just so outstanding, I said, ‘This is it! This is the 2020 Donnie challenge.”

Navaria said she had heard stories of outrageous tip amounts left to unsuspecting restaurant servers, but could scarcely believe it actually happened to her.

“I hear about this happening to other people and I knew about that challenge, but who would have ever thought it would happen to you?” Navaria said.

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She has yet to decide how she plans to spend the $5,000, but shares in Boch’s hope that the newly dubbed “2020 tip challenge” will move forward.

Navaria posted a photo of the receipt on Facebook, thanking Boch for his generosity and asking friends to share the image in hopes it would eventually reach Wahlberg.

Meanwhile, Boch has a challenge for those out there with the means to bless someone with a tip amount even greater than the one he left for Navaria.

“Who’s making the next move? Who’s it going to be? Who’s going to help us out? It’s got to be more than me — I was more than Donnie — [so] it’s got to be more than me. Let’s keep it going!” Boch said.

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A graduate of Grand Canyon University, Kim Davis has been writing for The Western Journal since 2015, focusing on lifestyle stories.
Kim Davis began writing for The Western Journal in 2015. Her primary topics cover family, faith, and women. She has experience as a copy editor for the online publication Thoughtful Women. Kim worked as an arts administrator for The Phoenix Symphony, writing music education curriculum and leading community engagement programs throughout the region. She holds a degree in music education from Grand Canyon University with a minor in eating tacos.
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