GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — The owners of the Garage Bar & Grill are trying to help those in the area that have recently been downsized from their job by launching an initiative called “Garage Bar Cares."

They will offer 100 free takeout meals per day starting Friday, March 20. The first 100 people to call the Grand Rapids location, starting at 10 a.m., can submit their order for a free meal to be picked up during operating hours.

It's an idea that Garage proprietor Kevin Farhat, along with Garage Bar owners Max Benedict, Dave Levitt and Brad Rosely, hopes will inspire others to find unique ways to help those in need during this unsettling period.

"We're all in this together, so we all should find ways to help our friends and neighbors," said Garage Bar & Grill proprietor Kevin Farhat. "For Garage Bar, we felt that cooking up some of our homemade items and giving away for free is our way of pitching in."

Anyone who has been recently downsized or temporarily laid off from their job qualifies, although Garage Bar staff don't plan on asking for any specific identification. Individuals can call the Garage's North Monroe District location at 616-454-0321 with their name and order and select their pick up time. Guests will be able to order any item off the menu for each person in their household, up to 4 people. Owners are asking that guests limit their order to once per day.

Here's a list of restaurants still taking orders during the statewide closure

"The goal is to give a person everything they need to go home and share a warm meal together," Farhat said.

Additional sponsors for the idea have already stepped up to increase the offering from the originally planned 25 to 100 meals per day. Mercantile Bank, Pioneer Construction, Car City, Custer Office/Century Flooring, EatGR, Leadco and an anonymous family have all joined the cause and donated to increase the amount of people the Garage can help.

"Our goal was just to get this idea off the ground and provide some relief to those in need,“ said Dave Levitt, partner, Third Coast Development and one of the four Garage Bar owners. "But as soon as we mentioned this to other local business owners, it really took off."

The Garage Bar is welcoming additional participation in the effort. Interested parties can learn more about sponsoring meals or making financial contributions by contacting Kevin Farhat at 616-454-0321.

“It’s the community supporting those in need, which is keeping our staff employed,” Farhat explained, referring to the business remaining open to delivery and take out customers. “The kindness of our community is really on display here.”

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