How to help your favorite College Park restaurants

Nando's is one of many local restaurants still open during the pandemic. (James B. Hale/The Diamondback)

Attention to all who love downtown College Park: Your favorite restaurants and bars need support. 

During the pandemic, not all businesses are able to remain open — but there are things you can do to help them stay afloat. Here are some ways you can help out local businesses and combat the virus-driven lull in revenue:

Donations

Taqueria Habanero, a relatively new soul on the College Park restaurant scene, came out of a 17-day closure on April 9. According to manager William Martinez, 80 to 90 percent of the restaurant’s staff has been laid off. Visit their GoFundMe page to support their staff, if you are able.

Across the street from the Mexican eatery, Vigilante Coffee is currently closed until further notice. In their physical absence, they’re selling bags of coffee grounds in singles and doubles as one-time buys or in subscription deals that vary weekly. There’s also a $1 “support the Vigilante team” option if you don’t want any coffee and just want to donate.

[Read more: We tried an assortment of hard seltzers so you don’t have to]

Social Media

A local favorite known for their irresistible fries and hearty gyros, Marathon Deli continues to serve takeout and delivery in the most trying of times. Restaurant employee Leilani Blunt said business is moving along fairly well, and she hopes dedicated Marathoners will use social media to promote the fact that they’re still open.

“We’re getting by, but more orders are always welcome. We want to serve the community, as we’re still showing up to cook for those who want and need a meal,” Blunt said. 

Marathon is moving just around the corner onto Route 1 in the coming weeks, with a Herculean mural painted outside the new storefront. They are promoting the move on their Instagram @marathondeliCP and asking customers, fans and Marathon loyalists to repost and spread the word. 

There are still bar options open, as well. Cornerstone Grill and Loft, R.J. Bentley’s and Terrapin’s Turf are all open daily, and their social media accounts have been steadily promoting carry-out and delivery specials. Rather than creating an atmosphere of cut-throat competition, the bars appear to be supporting each other, as Cornerstone and Bentley’s  have mentioned one another in response to a Twitter poll about the best bars in the nation.

If you want to support them or keep up with their latest news, their respective Instagrams are: @cornerstone_cp, @rj_bentleys and @terrapinsturf.

[Read more: Review: Cornerstone’s takeout cocktails aren’t the same as happy hour]

Delivery / Carry-Out 

For those still in the area, most of the restaurants listed above are at least partially open and serving customers who are willing to support in dire times. 

Taqueria Habanero is now offering online carry-out orders Thursday through Sunday from 12-8 p.m. With their newly acquired alcohol license, you can pair your favorite spirits with their authentic Mexican cuisine.

Turf is serving up spontaneous specials such as Hump Day Burgers, Slider Saturdays, Taco Tuesdays and Fishbowl Fridays. just to name a few. Deals of the day can be found out with a quick phone call or scan of their social media. 

Nando’s, College Park’s unofficial king of chicken, is still open for carry-out and delivery, as well. Same tangy sauces, same great quality chicken. Don’t forget the side of Perinaise.

Unfortunately, a sweeping majority of establishments in the area are closed — and since many are chains and may be open in other areas, their websites do not always have links to donation pages. Regardless, you can still reach out to see how you can help; give a call or send an email, if possible. In these trying times, everyone needs a little boost.

 

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