DSM Restaurant Week begins at an important time for local businesses

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DES MOINES, Iowa — DSM Restaurant Week begins Friday.

Last year DSM Magazine did a survey with participating businesses. The president of the Business Publications Corporation, Suzanna de Baca, said restaurant owners responded by saying DSM Restaurant Week increased their foot traffic during the pandemic. With COVID-19 cases rising in the state, Baca said this possible boost in sales is important.

“They needed the support, whether it was carry-out, whether it was dining in, and whether it was the patio seating. Our restaurants are fantastic. They’re an important part of our cultural scene,” Baca said. “They said thank you for helping spread the word and making us more visible.” 

Local businesses are preparing for fall months by enhancing hygiene measures and still requiring workers to wear masks. 

The Iowa Restaurant Association said it does not believe that the state will close in-door dining in the near future. Jessica Dunker with the restaurant association said although businesses feel supported by the state, they feel neglected on the federal level. 

According to the Iowa Restaurant Association, there were 2,600 Iowa restaurants that qualified for the Restaurant Revitalization grant. However, funds ran out for this grant after disbursing money to 850 businesses. 

Now, there are over 1,000 restaurants in the state who qualify for assistance but have yet to receive any help. 

“We still have over 1,500 restaurants in the state of Iowa that qualified for assistance at the federal level and checked every box, and simply that is a program that they have chosen not to put funding back into,” Dunker said. “Not sure why, I’m still hopeful it will. But at the federal level we can hope for the best but we plan for the worst.”

Restaurant Week goes from August 20th to August 29th. There are 28 participating restaurants. Visit the DSM Restaurant Week’s website for this year’s prices and menu items. 

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