BALTIMORE – The organizers of Baltimore Restaurant Week are pausing the promotion for winter 2021 and, instead putting their marketing and promotional weight behind a winter Rally Around Restaurants campaign to support this struggling industry.
Visit Baltimore and Downtown Partnership made the change from Restaurant Week to Rally Around Restaurants after close consultation with restaurant owners and managers. The two groups will support the Rally campaign with ad buys and their combined social media accounts, which reach millions of people each month.
Any Baltimore restaurant or food business that has carryout, delivery, pantry items, or gift cards can be a part of the campaign by submitting their information at: www.diningatadistance.com/baltimore. There is no fee to participate. Participants are invited to create social media posts and videos that the Rally Around Restaurants will share. Submissions may be sent to: Info@baltimorerestaurantweek.com
In a typical winter Restaurant Week, which is jointly produced by Visit Baltimore and Downtown Partnership of Baltimore, businesses offer reduced-price, multi-course meals to incentivize diners. Given the current in-person dining restrictions and already reduced revenues due to the pandemic, event organizers did not want to ask struggling businesses to reduce their prices. Instead, the organizations will urge people to order from restaurants frequently and directly, avoid third-party sites that take a portion of sales, purchase gift cards when possible, and tip well.
Rally Around Restaurants organizers have also partnered with the Baltimore Restaurant Relief Fund (BRRF), a local non-profit initiative that attracts donations to financially support Baltimore City restaurants and feed unemployed or underemployed restaurant industry workers. BRRF is accepting applications for restaurants willing to participate in the “Feed The Industry” Initiative. Each restaurant will be given a budget of $1500 to produce 100 meals at $15/meal. Once restaurant participants are solidified, BRRF will open up a sign-up for meals so that the 100 meals can be tracked for each restaurant location. We will begin with two meals during the week and one during the weekend to spread the initiative from January – February. The public may learn more about the fund and make donations by visiting: www.BaltimoreRestaurantWeek.com.
Increased restaurant sales will keep businesses going up and down the food supply chain, including local farms, beer and alcohol producers, and delivery staff. Downtown Partnership and Visit Baltimore want the public to recognize that if we are not here for these businesses this winter, they may not be here for us this spring and summer.
Downtown Partnership of Baltimore is a non-profit corporation creating a more vibrant Downtown community for businesses, property owners, residents, and employees. Downtown Partnership initiatives increase investment, retain business, solve transportation challenges, improve parks and greenspace, and create workforce development opportunities. For more than 25 years, these programs have been good for Downtown and good for Baltimore. Visit www.GoDowntownBaltimore.com to learn more.
Visit Baltimore is the official sales and marketing arm for the City of Baltimore. The 501(c)(6) organization generates economic benefits for stakeholders through the attraction of convention, group, and leisure visitors. In 2019, spending by travelers totaled $6 billion in direct spending throughout the city, supporting 86,827 total jobs and generating $750 million in state and city tax revenues. For more information, please visit Baltimore.org.