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Fork & Spoon call for local organizations, restaurants to help 'pick up the tab' during holidays

“The Fork & Spoon has been here for years. We’ve been doing this before the pandemic, since the pandemic we haven’t stopped.”
Posted at 10:10 AM, Nov 26, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-26 12:10:55-05

BOZEMAN — The Fork & Spoon in Bozeman says they’ve never been this busy. Especially with the holiday season approaching, the need and the demand for their services has never been this high.

“The Fork & Spoon has been here for years. We’ve been doing this before the pandemic, since the pandemic we haven’t stopped,” said Rick Hilles manager at the Fork & Spoon.

The Fork & Spoon is Montana’s first and only pay-what-you-can restaurant, and their message has been clear from the beginning: A delicious evening meal at a price you can afford.

During a worldwide pandemic,.that means the Fork & Spoon has served more than 14,000 meals at no charge since the pandemic started.

“We’ve really seen the uptick is the people who might just be your neighbors or someone you might just pass on the street and look like everything is fine, but they’re struggling too,” said Hilles.

The Fork & Spoon says they’re stretched thin, working with a lean staff and record demand.

While staff say they are grateful for the donations and financial support from the community, they’re looking for some specific help.

“Maybe if you want to purchase food for Fork & Spoon to send out to people who are looking for food on a daily basis. Purchasing it through any of the restaurants in town and then that food is going to people that are really in need of it,” said head chef and front of house manager Leah Smutko.

Meaning a single person or a group can support a local restaurant by placing an order for food that the Fork & Spoon will help distribute to those in need a meal.

The restaurant says there have been a handful of restaurants and organizations participating in the effort, and it’s been well received.

“If someone can ask a restaurant to provide meals to the warming center for one night during the week this winter, that’s a huge leap in us being able to provide services to everybody,” said Hilles.

You can learn more about how to help support the Fork & Spoon by visiting their website: https://www.forkandspoonbozeman.org/pick-up-the-tab