The white tablecloth bistro where you celebrate life's happy moments.
The "dirty deli" with the best bagels or pastrami.
The mom and pop diner that has the best greasy breakfast (or late night) fare.
Your morning coffee cafe stop.
The watering hole you and your pals call YOUR spot.
Any of these...ALL of these are being challenged beyond belief right now, and we have to do something to save restaurants.
1. Without help, an estimated 1 in 3 restaurants in America will close by year's end. ONE THIRD OF RESTAURANTS, GONE. FOREVER.
2. It's not just restaurants. It's the farmers, bakers, fisherman, distributors, and dozens of other purveyors that create the supply chain for restaurants who are also being impacted. If restaurants go, they may go, too.
3. Restaurants offer opportunities to a wonderfully diverse population. 60% of chefs are minorities, as are more than half of other restaurant staffers. More than half are women, and of those there are over 1 million single mothers employed by restaurants.
4. Restaurants create middle-class jobs at THREE TIMES the rate of the national economy. Have you ever worked in a restaurant? More than half of us have, so you've lived this life.
5. Food is delicious. Hospitality makes the world feel warmer, less scary. And having those spots, like the ones mentioned above, makes life so much richer.
6. WE NEED RESTAURANTS!
So, in a year where so much is canceled, let's do our part to make sure restaurants aren't on that list.
Which brings us to me. What am I doing to support this cause? Well, this fall I planned to run my ninth marathon and train my buns off to quality for Boston. It was a goal I never thought was within reach, until all of a sudden it was, and I shocked myself by being within a minute of it at my last marathon. Of course, the race in which I planned to qualify this fall has been canceled. They all are. But I am training anyway. And I'm excited that this year I'm shifting my goal from chasing seconds to being about accomplishing something far bigger than a PR. So, on October 24, I will run a virtual marathon and fundraise for a cause that I care deeply about, and donate every. single. cent. to the James Beard Foundation's Open For Good effort,whose mission is to save independent restaurants and bars by providing critical resources to help independent restaurants build the capacity to come back stronger, more equitable, more sustainable, and more resilient.
So that's it!
Is it worth $10 to you to save your favorite spot?
$20 to make sure all the people there keep their jobs?
Maybe a dollar per mile (that makes $26.20) to put good karma out there for delicioius food and hospitality?
I'd LOVE your support in keeping this industry, my favorite industry, afloat during this incredibly challenging time. I'll be forever grateful, and all the chefs, waitstaff, bussers, line cooks, hosts (etc.) will be too.
Thank you <3