By Melanie Lekocevic
Capital Region Independent Media
EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is the second in the Ravena News-Herald’s ongoing “Good News” initiative — a concerted effort to shine a light on the good things that are happening in our region and in the communities we cover. There are all kinds of programs, companies and individuals that are working hard to make their corner of the world a better place, and we tip our hats to them! Let’s all share in the “Good News!”
RAVENA — Two Ravena businesses have taken it upon themselves to come to the aid of another business in a neighboring community in its time of need.
M&R Snacks, on Route 9W near the Lafarge plant, and Halfway House Tavern, on Main Street, are donating a portion of their proceeds to Chrissy & Tim’s Diner on Route 9W in Coxsackie, which suffered a devastating fire July 24.
The diner is closed until repairs can be made, and in the meantime, local businesses have been raising funds to help with the eatery’s reopening.
At M&R Snacks, owner Wayne Pearson said he is donating $1 from each sandwich sold, as well as all tips and donations coming in from customers.
“I’ve got a jug up on the shelf and it’s to help Chrissy & Tim’s Diner and their staff,” Pearson said. “I want to help out because of the fire they had. The money is for whatever they need. Once I give it to them, they can do whatever they want with it.”
The Halfway House Tavern on Main Street, owned by Ravena Mayor Bill Misuraca, donated 10% of all proceeds from beverage sales on July 29 to the diner. At press time, Misuraca did not yet know how much had been collected for the fundraiser.
He said he wanted to help a fellow business in their time of need.
“Business is ridiculously tough enough in New York right now,” Misuraca said. “I know the struggle. We just hope this helps them get back at it.”
Pearson said he does not personally know the diner’s owners but wanted to help a fellow business in a nearby community when they need it. He will continue his fundraising efforts for an undetermined amount of time, so a final donation amount is not yet known.
“Businesses have to stick together,” Pearson said. “This is a small community, so we need to help each other. I want to try to help them so they can get back on their feet.”
This isn’t the first time the owner of M&R Snacks has come to the aid of those in need. Pearson said he also raised funds for an officer in the Coeymans Police Department who suffered a burn injury, and for an employee who was injured in an explosion at Coeymans Landing Marina in January.
The Halfway House Tavern has also participated in numerous fundraising activities over the years.
“We are trying to do things right and help our neighbors,” Pearson said. “It’s the American way.”
The eatery’s owners said they appreciate the support they have received from area businesses.
“We appreciate and are in awe of all community businesses that have reached out to us and for all the donations at this incredibly difficult time,” said Chrissy and Tim Reese. “Donations will go to an account to help our employees and hopefully rebuild the business.”
The diner was closed when the fire broke out the afternoon of July 24 and there were no injuries, but the diner remains closed until further notice.