Southwest Minneapolis community gives back to neighborhood restaurant

As the owner of Cave Vin for 19 years, Ken Wills has always given back to the Armitage neighborhood. Now the neighborhood has found a way to give back to him.

"It's been very rewarding. Makes you feel very, gratitude is not even the word," said Wills.

Before the pandemic, Wills says the fine casual restaurant in southwest Minneapolis was open 5 days a week.

But now its down to only 3 days a week because the labor shortage has made it hard to find enough workers to staff the restaurant.

"It's just been a different kind of complexity to find quality people," said Wills.

(FOX 9)

Over the weekend, Wills asked on Facebook if anyone could help serve on Saturday night. 

Within an hour and a half, he had a dozen responses from customers, neighbors and even complete strangers. 

Four of them volunteered their time to serve food and tend bar, even donating their tips to the kitchen staff.

"I think with COVID, we've seen a lot of great small businesses close down and I don't want to see that happen to Cave Vin," said Brenda Hunter-Hanson.

Wills says he would like to know where all the hospitality workers went, but he is thankful when his restaurant needed help, so many people stepped up to the plate.

"I would love to be up to 5 nights a week again and fully staffed and just roll right on. Just don't know how to do it quite yet," said Wills.