People came in droves to support a local business.
The Venue by Ken’s Catering has been struggling for the past few weeks after its merchant, Clover Canada, began withholding credit and debit deposits.
Owner Kelsey Dalida told MIX 107 that when she spoke to the company, she was told the payments were on hold because some of their larger payments had been flagged. She said she tried to explain to them that it was both a catering business and a restaurant, so it shouldn’t be uncommon to have longer days, but that she couldn’t convince anyone to release the payments.
The Fort Saskatchewan restaurant posted a message on Facebook Thursday night (April 21), asking for help from the community. The owners hoped people would consider getting food from the restaurant and paying by cash or wire transfer as the business sank without their day-to-day funds.
“Honestly, I had no other choice. Just putting myself in the community, that was hard to do,” Dalida said. “I know if I ask for help it will come. Our community has always been so supportive.”
The post received hundreds of shares and many people expressed their support for the company. Over the next four days, Dalida said the restaurant was packed. She went so far as to open the doors early on weekends.
“We had record sales on Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday,” Dalida said.
Dalida tried to personally thank everyone who came to help – the response she heard was “you called, we came”.
“Thank you will never be enough. It’s not a strong enough word but honestly, our community, the city of Fort Saskatchewan, they saved us and we will be forever grateful to them.”
Dalida said Clover Canada finally released the payouts on Monday evening. She attributes much of this to the pressure many people put on them after hearing The Venue’s story.
While Dalida is frustrated with the way the situation has been handled, she said she hopes other companies see this as a sign to always keep pushing and never give up. They plan to show their gratitude to Fort Saskatchewan by continuing to give back through their programs like Feed the Fort.