COLORADO SPRINGS — In this week’s Restaurant Report Card, a Colorado Springs pretzel shop owner shared a Facebook post that has since gone viral, calling for help to keep his doors open.
The call was overwhelmingly answered, but something else he noticed during this rough time, is what’s giving him even more hope for the future.
“During the height of the virus, we had 10 delivery drivers and all of them were unemployed, laid-off workers that weren’t qualified to get unemployment,” Owner Mark Anthony Bryant said.
Once businesses began to reopen, he slowly sent delivery drivers back to their old jobs. Then another bump in the road hit – construction closing the intersection in front of the shop.
“Nobody could get to our kitchen for almost three and a half months,” Bryant said.
So with a spoonful of honesty and a dash of vulnerability, he decided to make a call on social media.
“My hope was to just make enough money to stay open until this epidemic was over,” Bryant explained.
But he did not expect what he saw when he opened his doors the next day.
“It did surprise me a lot,” he said. “We had a line for I would have to say five and a half hours straight.”
For most local businesses 2020 can be described in one word: adaptation.
Bryant is now expanding beyond pretzels, offering three-course take-home family meals.
“Every week we’re doing something that’s kind of a family recipe,” said Bryant.
He went from once fearing his business would be the next Coronavirus casualty, to now having even more hope.
“There were days I would go out and talk to the crowd, and tears would come to my eyes because it’s so overwhelming what this town is willing to do,” Bryant said.
He says during a time when things seem so divided, it’s seeing the unity in this community.
“It doesn’t matter democrat or republican, none of that matters. We’re Coloradoans,” said Bryant.
Mark Anthony’s Pretzels is located at 2851 Dublin Boulevard. This week’s take-home family meal is a salad, chicken, and biscuits, plus cinnamon sugar, apple pretzel strudel for $34.95.
You can pick the meal up between 4:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m. or 5:00 p.m. on Saturdays. Orders for same-day pickup must be in by 2:00 p.m, just call (719) 217-7107 or visit https://markanthonyspretzels.com/.