The organizers of Locallicious teamed up with local businesses Thursday to serve up a free lunch to the restaurant industry workers who could use a pick-me-up during the current shutdown.
Randy Feltis and Ryan Traversy, of the Locallicious event, hosted the food and drink giveaway at The Farmhouse Restaurant yesterday afternoon, with support from industry companies.
Anyone working in the restaurant industry within Simcoe County was offered a free hot meal to say thank you for all they do and all they have had to deal with these last couple of years.
Feltis told BarrieToday it was in the name of support for those who help make the restaurant industry operate.
“We feel so bad for all the restaurant workers who are at work and working hard and then have to stop and go home because their business was forced to close,” he said. “The mental strain that puts on someone, mixed in with the financial strain? It gets to be a lot to bear. If a hot lunch adds a little smile to their faces, fantastic.”
Locallicious is a foodie event in the city that typically packs restaurants during its annual run and sees a fixed-price menu offered at each participating location. The menu usually includes an appetizer, soup or salad with an entrée and a dessert.
This year’s event was set for late January, but has been pushed back to what Feltis hopes is February or March.
More than 50 restaurants were involved when it last happened.
“The restaurant industry is competitive, no doubt. But at the same time, it is like a family in that we support each other when we can,” Feltis said. “We were also very thankful to some of our supporters who chipped in to make this happen.”
The Georgian Bay Spirit Company and Flying Monkeys Craft Brewery provided take out drinks while a sandwich or soup along with some cheese and a cookie was also provided, thanks to Fox’s Bakery, The Butcher Shoppe and Simcoe Produce.
Feltis, who owns The Farmhouse restaurant, has had a tough couple of years as he not only endured the shutdowns of the pandemic, but also a fire that shut down operations from August to November in 2020.
Still, he was only thinking of the staff on this day.
“Yeah, we’ve had a tough go here at The Farmhouse, but my staff were hit more than me and industry workers all over are who I’m thinking about every time we close the doors in Ontario,” Feltis said.