BALTIMORE (WJZ) — It’s been weeks with no end in sight to the dining ban across Baltimore, but there’s help on the way for struggling restaurants thanks to Jimmy’s Famous Seafood.
John Minadakis is the CEO.READ MORE: COVID-19 In Maryland: 932 New Cases Reported, 11 More Deaths
“What’s happening now is tragic. These city restaurants are struggling,” he said outside his restaurant Tuesday. “They’re not going to make it through the next couple weeks. They’re not going to make it through the next couple months. You cannot survive on carryout only.”
Minadakis, in a video posted Monday night, vowed to start helping five restaurants first — the Angle Inn, G & A Restaurant, The Chasseur, Slider’s and Shotti’s Point. His announcement of the Jimmy’s Famous Seafood fund has gotten the attention of celebrities nationwide.
“When you set unrealistic expectations in my mind, goals of $100K, you’ll be happy with 20% of that and give each bar $4,000-$5,000, helping keep the lights on for another week and do what you can despite the loss, but this is just mind blowing,” Minadakis said.
The effort has gotten the attention of the Baltimore Ravens’ Marlon Humphrey, Ronnie Stanley and general manager Eric DeCosta as well as Marcus Lemonis from CNBC, who donated $20,000.READ MORE: 'An Incredible Therapy' | Hagerstown Doctor Says Monoclonal Antibody Treatment Provides Fast Recoveries For Some COVID Patients
“He tweeted us around 2 in the morning,” Minadakis said. “My adrenaline’s been pumping since yesterday, so I haven’t been sleeping and it came along the Twitter feed and I knew it was time to get to work.”
The seafood powerhouse has been a staple in the Baltimore area for years. Its parking lots are empty with only carry out available. Still, they’re helping Baltimore because it’s in every shell they sell, every cake they make for a reason.
Before sprinting inside the restaurant as it opens, Minadakis explained why.
“You’re in Baltimore and you’re surrounded by a very loving community, very passionate community and a community where neighbors take care of neighbors and they’re showing that right now more than ever before,” he said.MORE NEWS: Rockville Police Officer, Maryland National Guardsman Daniel Morozewicz Arrested On Child Porn Charge
A GoFundMe page to raise money for the effort has raised more than $113,000 as of Tuesday evening. To learn more or to donate, click here.