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Help Your Favourite Historic Restaurant Out in the Pandemic—Nominate it for an Amex Grant

There’s no getting around it: The pandemic has hit the restaurant industry hard. That’s why American Express is funding $1 million in grants to historic U.S. restaurants—you can help by nominating your favorite place to break bread.

Restaurants are gathering places where history is made in meaningful ways, small and large, over and over again. They matter. Which is why the Backing Historic Small Restaurants initiative has been launched in partnership with the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

Because of this program, 25 much-loved eateries across the States will receive $40,000 each to help them navigate the pandemic.

Restaurant owners who receive a grant will have the opportunity to improve, upgrade, and preserve their physical spaces and online businesses, as well as mitigate existing operating costs.

For example, these businesses can rehabilitate the exteriors of historic buildings and facades, expand outdoor dining, upgrade their takeout and online ordering systems, or establish a stronger online presence. Updates like these are critical for future success in a post-pandemic world.

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“For generations, our nation’s oldest and most historic small restaurants have been safe spaces for customers to share meals, ideas, and their culture. They are at the heart of our neighborhoods, serve our communities, and help advance cultural and social change for those who live there,” says Colleen Taylor of American Express in a statement.

“Many have stood the test of time, but the pandemic has tested them in ways they could have never imagined. The ‘Backing Historic Small Restaurants’ program will help preserve these spaces not only for their legacy, but also for their earned place in our nation’s future.”

As part of the grant program, AT&T Business and Dell Technologies will also offer up to $250,000 collectively in products and services to the grantees to upgrade their digital business capabilities.

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Independent U.S. restaurants can be suggested for consideration at SavingPlaces.org/HistoricRestaurants. There’ll be a focus on restaurants owned by underrepresented groups who’ve been especially impacted by the pandemic. Time to start nominating your favorite spot.

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