One thing we've all missed this past year? Going out to eat. But those "temporarily closed" signs weren't just bad news for restaurant patrons. They were bad news for the restaurants, cafes, and coffee shops that provide spaces for us to get together to experience new cuisines - or old favorites.
Restaurants were one of the hardest-hit industries last year, collectively losing $120 billion in just the first three months of the pandemic. And while diners are trickling back to their local favorites, numbers are still down. With more people working from home, anxious about in-person dining, or preferring to stay home and cook instead, restaurants are seeing less foot traffic - and lower takings.
But when our restaurants struggle, so do our communities. Local restaurants lend immense, priceless value to our neighborhoods. They're spaces of inclusion, creativity, and togetherness. They're places to work, relax, celebrate, catch up, and just be. They infuse our communities with character and charm and speak to our local identities and cultures. And they showcase and support local talents - including chefs, sommeliers, local farmers, craftspeople, and artists.
Without restaurants, our communities lose something vibrant and rich - something almost impossible to get back. We need our local restaurants as much as they need us, so let's show them some love.
Vote for Your Go-To Spot!
As a show of appreciation for the DMV restaurants that make our region unlike any other, StellaPop is proud to announce the Rally for the Restaurants contest, which will help drive awareness and support for the public's top local destinations.
To enter, just nominate your favorite local DC, MD, or VA restaurant for a chance to win a $100 gift card to that spot. All you have to do is comment on our posts and tag your favorite restaurant. Spirit points if you share your favorite memory there or why you love it!
We can't wait to see your faves and to help spread the word about them! You win, and the restaurant wins!