Helping one another out in a time of need

Published: Feb. 16, 2021 at 4:15 PM CST
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STEVENS POINT, Wis. (WSAW) - The owner of El Mezcal restaurant in Stevens Point is doing his part to help other area restaurants during the pandemic.

Adolfo Melendez opened his restaurant in Stevens Point just weeks before the pandemic hit and now he’s using a chunk of his advertising dollars to buy gift cards to help other local restaurants.

As restaurants struggle to stay afloat during the pandemic, and money becomes tighter, lending a helping hand to other struggling restaurants was Melendez’s first instinct.

“If you help one person and another person helps another, that will help a lot,” Melendez said. “Most of us are just single family owners and there’s no where you can go to ask for help but ourselves.”

Melendez decided to spend more than $2,000 in gift cards to seven other area restaurants, each worth $20 and raffle them away on their Facebook page with money that was supposed to be used for advertising.

“The whole idea is just to give other opportunities,” Melendez said. “I think it’s important to support a small business, that’s what makes this little town so strong, you know? Because big companies come and go.”

Of course the other restaurants, like the Olympia Family Restaurant, love Melendez’s generosity in trying to get through the pandemic as a team effort.

“It’s a smart idea, we appreciate what he has done for our community,” Olympia Family Restaurant Owner Pete Ananiadis said. “In these COVID times, it’s very important to eat local, small mom and pop shops and he understands that and for all of us right now, it’s a tough time.”

Melendez plans to have two more gift card giveaways on their Facebook page so if you’re interested in joining the raffle, be sure to follow the link.

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