WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — All across the country, people are being encouraged to support local business on March 24, also known as Great American Takeout Day.
Great American Takeout Day is an effort to give a boost to local restaurants right when they need it most.
“I opened up a restaurant because I like the social aspect of it”, Highlander Public House’s owner Erik Scott said. “Now it’s just all gone so my soul is deflated.”
Scott said he has been doing his best to roll with the punches since Texas Governor Greg Abbott’s executive order went into effect Friday, March 19, and shut down dine-in services across the state.
“There’s no business, I mean we are doing to-go and pick-ups and stuff but we’re probably hitting not even a quarter of the business we did prior,” Scott said.
For the first time, Scott implemented curb-side pick up like many other local restaurants, and has turned his servers into delivery drivers.
“Let us minimize that contact and bring you food,” Scott said. “We’re just trying to operate in some fashion to keep our employees able to make a little money to able to feed their kids.”
Scott said not only is the drop in customers a sad thing, but the overall dining experience is just not the same.
El Norteno 2’s owner Ricardo Luna agreed.
“That dine-in experience, a lot of customers, you get your chips, your hot sauce, if we have music going on in the back,” Luna said. “You just get that kinda feel, you wanna sit down and your money is actually worth it.”
Luna, who said his servers are now car hoppers, hopes businesses will be able to bounce back once this is all done.
“Right now, a lot of businesses are probably operating pretty close to that break-even if not in the red,” Luna said.
Both Scott and Luna are appealing to residents to buy local, not just now but in weeks, and possibly months to come when they will need to make up the lost revenue.
Luna and Scott understand the importance of minimizing contact and encourage their fellow business owners to stay strong.
If you are a local business or restaurant owner, make sure to head over to our #TexomaStrong tab, where you can update your patrons on changes in hours and operations and keep them informed on the best way they can support you during this time.