RHINELANDER - Many businesses across the Northwoods closed their doors, recently, because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Mark Gutteter, owner of Rhinelander Cafe & Pub, said he hopes to re-open soon to help more than just their customers.
"The Rhinelander pub has been in the community since 1911, so we've been here for 109 years," said Gutteter. "This is an opportunity for us to get something back to the community."
Starting Easter Sunday, the Rhinelander Cafe & Pub will have curbside pick-up and provide 20% of its earnings to local nonprofits of the customer's choice.
Gutteter said this decision came after noticing the need for charitable donations within the community.
"What we've decided to do is help local nonprofits with their fundraising efforts at a time where they can definitely use the money," said Gutteter.
The promotion begins with Easter Sunday dinners and will continue every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday until the stay at home order ends.
General manager Brittnee Edwardsen said the restaurant has done fundraisers before, but this is its biggest endeavor yet.
"It feels really good to have the opportunity to give back to the community and hopefully encourage everybody to start pitching in and doing what they can to help each other during a difficult time," said Edwardsen.
The restaurant had to send more than 50 employees home when it closed on March 17.
Gutteter said this new promotion brings more than 20 employees back onto their payroll, during a time where everyone needs money for groceries and rent.
"We are thrilled to be able to bring some employees back to work. We hope that we're able to expand our hours further," said Gutteter. "Based on the customers calling and saying 'Hey, I'd like to take some food. I'd like to help nonprofits. I'd like to help the restaurant employees."