For about an hour Tuesday morning, customers of the drive-thru lane at the Starbucks in Nesconset were treated to free purchases thanks to the generosity of an anonymous regular.
At about 8:30 a.m., a male customer bought a $90 gift card at the main register and asked that the money be used for purchases at the drive-thru, said Lisa, a shift supervisor at the store who sold the man the gift card.
Lisa, who did not give her last name, said the man is a regular at the store, which is located at 465 Smithtown Blvd., but that he wanted to remain anonymous. “He just wanted to pay it forward,” she said.
She said some drive-thru customers were taken aback by the donor’s generosity, and some even decided to keep the spirit going by adding money to the gift card.
“Others kept filling it up,” Lisa said. “It lasted about an hour.”
All told, 30-40 purchases were made thanks to the card, she said.
Lucille Santoli, who grabs a grande mocha Frappuccino at the Starbucks in Nesconset at least four times a week, was in line at 1 p.m., too late to benefit from the gift card Tuesday. But she was on the receiving end of a previous act of kindness at the store.
About six months ago, a man in front of her in the drive-thru paid for her order.
"He wanted to pay it forward," said Santoli, 63, of Hauppauge. "And it made me want to do the same, so I did. The surprise brightened my day. I'm so glad to see it happen again."