Restaurant Week GR kicks off Friday

Grand Rapids

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Restaurant Week Grand Rapids kicks off Nov. 5 and runs through Nov. 13. Organizers say they’re ready to help owners get a much-needed boost in business while also giving back to up-and-coming chefs.

More than 50 restaurants in Grand Rapids are taking part in the nine-day event. For Royals on Wealthy Street, they say this week will not only help them fill their booths but also fill their rosters.

“We’ve got some really cool stuff going on, a big component of that is kicking off the season with Restaurant Week,” said Chris Funaro, the director of operations for All-In Hospitality Group.

After a difficult year and a half for restaurants across the country, Funaro says he’s excited for what’s to come.

“Right now, we’re in full-on ‘what are we going to do this winter?’ mode,” said Funaro.

Funaro says at Royals, they had a successful summer when it comes to business, but they’re still looking to hire about 10 more people.

“We’re still actively recruiting, doing everything we have to retain the current employees that we have,” said Funaro.

He’s hoping GR Restaurant Week will give them that push.

“We’ve got some new stuff that we’re really excited to show the city,” said Funaro.

“It’s a wonderful way for all of us to get back out and maybe find some new places to visit,” said Janet Korn, the senior vice president for Experience Grand Rapids.

Korn says not only does the week put a spotlight on local businesses, but it also helps culinary students. For every digital Restaurant Week check-in, Experience GR will donate $1 to a scholarship fund through Grand Rapids Community College’s Secchia Institute for Culinary Education.

“We’re really proud of the fact that we’re giving back to the community through the scholarships. It was really an idea that sprung from the very first year and it was aggressive, a group of restaurateurs who actually decided this is what they wanted to do,” said Korn.

These two hope more people will come out and experience what the Grand Rapids food scene has to offer.

“Restaurant Week is really a celebration of food and hospitality and we’re excited to have the opportunity to participate this year,” said Funaro.

To take part in Restaurant Week, you have to download a digital pass onto your phone and check-in at participating businesses. If you do so at three or more, you’ll receive a gift.

More information on the official rules can be found online

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