Skip to main content

Al's Breakfast, Grand Ole Creamery ask for help staying afloat during pandemic, shutdown

Al's Breakfast and the Grand Ole Creamery are seeking help fro patrons to stay in business.

Two Twin Cities institutions are raising money to get them through another COVID-related closure. 

Al's Breakfast in Minneapolis and the Grand Ole Creamery in St. Paul both say they've lost about 75% of their business due to the pandemic and subsequent shutdowns. 

Now they're turning to their loyal customers for help to stay in business through the winter. 

Student favorite Al's Breakfast, which has been operating under its current name since the 1960s, has launched a giving campaign through its website with a goal of raising $75,000. So far, it has raised nearly $20,000. 

"This has been the most challenging year that Al’s has ever had to endure. But hopefully, there is light at the end of a long tunnel," Al's website says. "The news of promising progress in many areas of this pandemic is giving us a path to the other side. It’s no surprise that our business has been off by a lot."

What's been even harder for Al's is not seeing its patrons sitting at the counter, the website notes. 

"It has really made me think a lot about the community at Al’s, and how much we have all come to know one another," the website says. "... Al’s is so much more than a restaurant. It’s a tradition that has been carefully passed to your friends and families, and I cherish that more than anything."

The restaurant says it's a challenge to keep things going, so it's requesting that people put Al's on their Christmas list, as they'll happily accept donations.

Sign up for our BREAKING NEWS newsletters

Anyone who donates will receive a code that will allow you to download an Al's soundtrack. Meanwhile, anyone who donates $500 or more will have a tile with their name on it mounted on the wall at Al's. Ben Krikava, Al's potter who makes all the mugs and pottery, will make the tiles. 

"We would like to recognize the people who make the extra effort to help us through this pandemic in a permanent way in our space," the website says. 

Meanwhile, the top 15 donors before Christmas will get an Al's Breakfast themed drawing from Bud Wudlick, a local art teacher and artist who used to draw while waiting for his food at Al's. 

Anyone interested in donating can do so on Al's website here or by mailing a check or cash via USPS to 413 14th Ave SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414.

Grand Ole Creamery

The Grand Ole Creamery, which has been serving its homemade ice cream and hand-rolled waffle cones since 1984, is seeking to raise $150,000 via a Go Fund Me page so it can "continue providing memories" and jobs for long-term staff. 

The shop says Gov. Tim Walz's most recent executive order that extends the ban on indoor service at restaurants, they're "faced with a critical financial challenge," noting they've been "denied multiple times for city and state COVID crisis aid."

"The Grand Ole Creamery has taken out hundreds of thousands $$$ in business loans just to stay afloat during this time, all of which must be paid back with significant interest," the Go Fund Me page says. "If you can provide anything to help keep our doors open, lights on, and chefs making delicious ice cream, please consider making a contribution."

The Go Fund Me was created on Thursday and has raised more than $3,000. You can donate here

Both Al's and the Grand Ole Creamery said if they raise more money than they need, they'll use that money to help the community by providing meals to healthcare workers and help the homeless.

Next Up

RogerEbnetMugshotYellowStone

Charges: Minnesota elementary school teacher sexually assaulted 3 boys

The incidents were captured on video taken inside an elementary school classroom.

Police tape

Person shot by police in St. Paul Monday evening

It happened around 6:10 p.m. on the city's East Side.

Kollie Jr.

Woman killed in Moorhead identified as suspect's mother

An appeal has been issued to find the suspect's vehicle, which remains missing.

Hamilton

Ticket details released for 5-week run of 'Hamilton' in Minneapolis

The tour of the production has been delayed twice due to the pandemic.

GummiesDeathByGummyBears

Minnesota Board of Pharmacy files lawsuit against 3 THC edible retailers

The board has received 46 complaints in the past four months regarding the products.

Screen Shot 2022-12-05 at 2.53.55 PM

ATF now investigating fire at Lyndale Avenue apartment building

It was the second fire at a vacant building owned by the same landlord that was being used by squatters in the past few months.

FB_IMG_1668547011137

Let the good times roll

Minnesota Roller Derby is back!

StumpysGoogleMaps

Beloved restaurant in southeastern MN to close after 40 years

A final night of celebrations is scheduled for Dec. 17.

PrinsburgGoogle

MN town shelves ordinance allowing residents to sue abortion providers

Attorney General Keith Ellison advised the town to not go forward with the ordinance.

Spring Street Tavern

Man shot dead inside Minneapolis tavern is identified

The suspect is being held on probable cause murder.

Related

al's breakfast

Minneapolis joint named to Esquire's list of restaurants we can't lose

Al's has been fundraising to stay afloat amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

harriet brasserie

A restaurant is using GoFundMe to stay open during the pandemic

The fundraiser says, "Just as they (the restaurant owners) have been there for you in challenging times, we ask you to come together for them."

al's breakfast

Al's Breakfast finally reopens for dine-in service – but only if you're vaccinated

The restaurant officially reopened to vaccinated customers Friday.

sven and ole

Sven and Ole's building in Grand Marais is for sale

"We decided it was well past time to revise the business operations of Sven and Ole's," the owner said.

billy's on grand

Coronavirus: Billy's on Grand will close for winter

The restaurant is among a growing list of eateries to close for the winter months.

rise bagel co

Bagel shop closes amid vax-or-test mandate, posts: 'All are welcome here'

Other Twin Cities restaurants have also temporarily closed this week.