Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Sympathy Dining

During my AM perusal of the Strib, I happened to glance over CJ's column. She has a segment on 'Sympathy Dining'. A plea to those to return to the 'Penn Best Steak House' after a deadly gangland style shooting on March 4th. The restaurant is struggling since the event. Lunch hours are slow, dinner time slower. But some are stepping up to help this unfortunate business, nestled in the wrong place at the wrong time:
Caroline Lowe confirmed that she has eaten twice at Penn Best Steakhouse since the gruesome double murder. One of the Twin Cities' best TV reporters and a certified police officer to boot, Lowe is also a huge softy.

Shortly after the March 4 killings of Frank Haynes, 21, and Raliegh Robinson, 68, Lowe took her husband, Jack, to eat there when the family-owned restaurant reopened. She and Jack waited to eat steak until after the place was swarming with TV cameras and politicos showing support.

Last week, Lowe returned to dine again, this time in the company of photog David Chaney.

"Chaney and I had a nice lunch on Monday," she said. "But it's heartbreaking to see this place empty, and I think if enough people don't go, it's going to close. The restaurant has nothing to do with what happened. They just happened to be there when a gunman targeted one person at one table, and an innocent bystander, a 68-year-old grandfather, got hit in the crossfire. I wrote a little thing about a gangland shooting in a family restaurant in my blog."
Yeap, Caroline has a blog, and speaks of the shooting at this entry.

But the story continues, and it is a impassioned portrayal of business survival, with a dinner invite thrown in.

So if you are in the neighborhood, looking for a place to eat, stop by. As Caroline said
"Do you want to let thugs shut a restaurant down in an area that doesn't have that many choices?"
Don't let them win!


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