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Community is Crucial

by Erin Jones-Wesley 2 years ago in restaurants
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Support your local small businesses and pay it forward.

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I live in Santa Monica, on the Westside of Los Angeles, which basically means anything that makes me get on the freeway has to be very, very important because I just genuinely LOVE my neighborhood.

I mean, why shouldn't I? I met my boyfriend here, the old fashion way actually, while shopping at a neighborhood corner French boutique (true story). I bump into friends and neighbors when I walk out to grab a coffee, and there is a great sense of community pride that despite the small reminders of city living (like street sweeping tickets), feel pretty small town.

I love my neighborhood because there is a comfort in realizing I am apart of a community that cares about my neighborhood as much as I do. We all like to support the local businesses, and despite the influx of tourists that come to visit in the summer and on weekends, we still continue to support our local businesses, even if that means that they'll have less time to chit chat. It's a bummer when my favorite barista doesn’t have time to have an in-depth conversation about our current Netflix obsessions (hello, Tiger King), but it's survivable.

This current crisis, however, is heartbreaking. The usual small businesses that are filled with locals during the week, and get busy with "out of town-ers" on the weekends are now fighting to stay open. It does not seem fair, but with some people out of work and with Stay at Home orders throughout Los Angeles, there is not much that can be done except for supporting local businesses during this time, especially restaurants. A restaurant that I love and will continue to support is The Waterfront Venice, a local spot right on the Venice boardwalk.

This is a restaurant in my neighborhood that I love, not just because of the food, although the food is delicious and the chefs are incredible, but also because of the people. The Waterfront Venice is a weekend hotspot. I’m sure you’ve seen those beautiful instagram shots of people having a great time out in the beer garden, or maybe you’ve waited in the line that curls down the boardwalk to get inside. The Waterfront is not just a weekend hot spot, with an amazing DJ playing great tunes, but it is also weeknight zone of just pure positivity.

Before the crisis The Waterfront was hosting events nearly every night just to bring the community together, and now more than ever they could use their community to come together to support their staff by ordering take-out, delivery, or buying gift cards or merchandise.

Their online or phone order lines are open, and if you’re craving a Sunday brunch mimosa, they have that available for delivery or pick-up too! If you’re more of a “Rose All Day” type of person, you can order that as well. Each day there is a food special, but the tacos are my favorite. I also appreciate that they have vegan and vegetarian options too, hello Beyond burgers?!

Waterfront also has grocery baskets available to order, as well as lots of options on their menu for even the pickiest of eaters. Oh, and did I mention, their baskets have toilet paper too! It’s great to know the places we love the most are there for us even during crisis, and so I hope we can support them as much as we all can.

The Waterfront Venice puts so much love into the community, and so for my Pay it Forward challenge, I am hoping other people send them love right back. I love my neighborhood, and The Waterfront Venice is one of the reasons why.

Community is important, shop small businesses, and support yours.


About the author

Erin Jones-Wesley

MFA, Producer, non-profit co-founder, ESPN3 Broadcaster, and 2nd Runner Up Miss CA USA 2019.

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