Minneapolis restaurant takes unique approach to build community relationships

Sit with people you don't know and only pay if you can: It's a unique plan by a new restaurant owner in south Minneapolis and it's really about building relationships.

Provision Community Restaurant on Harriet Avenue is open to anyone and everyone, allowing restaurant goers to give what they can.

The restaurant serves as a place to gather and to grow. It strives to be a place where the things that separate us outside are left outside. And inside, those differences disappear at a community table over a warm home-cooked meal.

"We’re doing a couple of different egg soufflés today," Provision founder Anna Wienke said.

While "restaurant" may be in the name, Wienke says this place is about more than just a meal.

"Welcome to the family," she said. "It’s not really a restaurant. This is a family dinner.”

The food served is meant to be shared and the tables are meant to bring groups together.

"We all have seasons and times of life and sometimes we need a little extra help, and this is what it’s about," Wienke said. "Getting together and community and being there for one another."

When guests leave, they simply give as they can. Provision is able to put food on the table through those donations and with help from volunteers.

"Just to give back as much as possible, whatever they need, wash dishes, serve," said volunteer Donovan Barr.

But it’s the people and the desire to engage that makes the restaurant a place where barriers are broken and bonds are built.

Anna says they need 12 people a day to make a $20 donation so they can keep serving meals to the community. They serve dinner Wednesday through Friday and brunch on Saturday.