DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - Out of work, but not out of options.
When the arrival of Covid-19 forced restaurants to stop in-house dining, Terilli's on Lower Greenville quickly pivoted to to-go and delivery options.
And they also tapped into a deep pool of loyal customers to keep their workers working by asking customers to hire them themselves.
"I was sitting at home one night and I said 'what else can we do' and I was like, surely they have more talents, I know my staff," says managing partner, Amanda Terilli-Loyd.
Her staffers soon replied with a long list of possible side gigs to keep some cash coming in.
"Housekeeping, cleaning, laundry, landscaping, errand-running, baby-sitting, dog-grooming: some even wrote on the list 'I'll do anything', so you could tell that they needed help, needed support, needed the money."
And once again, customers who at Terilli's are like family, came to the rescue.
"First two hours, I got five six calls," says Terilli's server and bartender Eric Shultze. "Help with a bathroom, finish a deck, or cleaning something. I was like 'Wow!' to be overwhelmed with work when we were out of work was great and I attribute that to Amanda."
This is not the first time that customers have helped the neighborhood treasure through a crisis.
In 2010, the entire block of restaurants on the strip of Lower Greenville burned.
Not only did customers have their backs, they bought personalized bricks and donated money to help them rebuild.
During the remodel, they added a rooftop patio which allows them to serve customers now, without reopening the dining room.
"We could not do it without their support over the years," says Terilli-Loyd. "From the bricks, to the ordering to go, from just the donations to our wait staff during this pandemic, they definitely treated us like family."
The support keeps staff and owners optimistic about the restaurant's future even in uncertain times.
"That's what keeps us so close," says Shultze. "We want to take care of them (customers). They take care of us. This disaster really brought us closer and I'm thankful for it. Terilli's will be back. Once again we will rise."
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