OPELIKA, ALA. (WTVM) - The restaurant industry, like many other businesses, is suffering major blows during this coronavirus pandemic.
Restaurants locally and nationally are joining together to encourage to-go orders, as part of the Great American Takeout.
As the coronavirus causes major consequences to all different types of businesses throughout the area, some restaurant owners are feeling unsettled.
“[I’m] stressed for sure, because there is the uncertainty,” said Suzanne Lowery, the owner of Susie K’s in Opelika. “This is our livelihood. [It took] blood, sweat, tears to make this work for the last three years.”
The owners of restaurants like Breezeway and Susie K’s said they’ve seen business slow over the course of this COVID-19 pandemic.
“I would say we’re probably doing a third of what we usually do,” said John Henley, the owner of Breezeway.
The pandemic is hitting Susie K’s too.
“[We’ve lost] more than 50 percent for sure,” she said. “Our business is 95 percent sit-down, so it’s drastically affected us.”
But a nationwide push among restaurants called the Great American Takeout is asking the public to support the restaurant industry.
“It’s just showing solidarity with everyone,” Suzanne Lowery said. “You’re showing these other small businesses that we do support you.”
The Great American Takeout is a simple concept. You order food to go, through curbside pick up or delivery, to help your neighborhood eateries and enjoy some tasty food you didn’t have to cook, all while practicing social distancing.
“Any kind of national day is great,” Tim Lowery, Susie K’s other owner, said. “It brings more awareness to the issues that are going on. When you support a local business, you’re supporting the children of the community, the families of the community.”
While Tuesday is the designated day for the Great American Takeout, restaurant owners said it’s important to support these local spots everyday.
“We’ve been here 30 years, and we want to be here another 30,” Henley said.