Customers are dining in cold, but businesses worry it might not be enough

MEDIA, Pennsylvania (WPVI) -- There's an effort to safely support local restaurants at the end of a very tough year in Media, Pennsylvania.

Whether it's braving the cold and dining outdoors or getting takeout, customers are doing what they can to help, but some businesses say, sadly, it may not be enough.

"I'm tired of cooking, my kids are home full time," said Latanya Owens, from Southwest Philadelphia, who said she has been getting takeout a lot more this holiday season than in years past.

Home for the holidays has a new meaning this year, as many people have already been home for months now, because of the COVID dining restrictions in Pennsylvania. That's why Spasso Italian Grill in Media is empty inside and outside.

"Typically this time of the year we're used to having a packed restaurant every single night," said Zac Schauerman, a server at Spasso.

Spasso's is still busy with takeout orders, bringing the traditional seven fish meal to people's homes, however, that means less wait staff and tips.

"It's tough, we lost about 90% of our staff, so there's only a handful of us allowed to do takeout because there's no shifts because of no business," said Alyssa Colagreco, a server at Spasso.

Over at Fellini Cafe, they've gotten creative with gas lamps for outdoor dining.

Mary Wolff said she never pictured herself dining outside Christmas week, but she decided to brave the cold with her coat on, dining on the sidewalk.

"If it's over 30 degrees and sunny, you go out," said Wolff.

Still, wait staff said the takeout orders and the few dining in the cold aren't enough financially.

"It's going to be a tough Christmas and New Year for the service," said Lalo Febrer, a waiter at Fellini.

Zubair Khan, with Media Business Authority, said now more than ever people need to support local restaurants.

"We need people's help, we need people to remember what a small town like Media and other towns that are near us can do to make this Christmas as festive as possible," said Khan.
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