Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Losing TGIF is no big deal

I NEVER REALLY liked the TGIF restaurant by the Quincy Mall. It was cookie cutter food, expensive, and the service was average. We ate there in December and it wasn't anything special, except for the small portions and big bill.

TGIF closed without warning Monday. That's not kosher, because people are out of work without warning. The explanation from the owners? "Economic conditions."

Economic conditions? If you mean we can go to a locally owned joint like Kelly's or Tiramisu and get twice the meal for the same price or less, well, you are right. And I want to make it very clear this isn't a slam against the staff or anybody who worked at TGIF, but it was a chain restaurant, and it showed.

Chain restaurants can still be good. We recently visited Texas Roadhouse and it was a warm and inviting atmosphere with food that was obviously pre-prepared but still great servings and good prices.

I wonder if this lawsuit had anything to do with the TGIF chain just being sold and "economic conditions."

On the other hand, Chicks On The River across from Clat Adams Park has opened, and I can't wait to go. Chicks has an awesome restaurant in Macomb and we made it a point to eat there almost every time when visiting Emily at Western Illinois University. Sheryl and I were hoping to go last night, but we drove by and the place was packed to the rafters. So we'll wait for the buzz to die down a bit and then check it out.

On the same day TGIF closed, the Mustard Seed announced it was shutting its doors. In the day and age of downloading music and books, retail book stores are becoming an endangered species.

It's the ebb and tide of business in the Q-Town. We know all too well how tough it is to survive and thrive today. We have been fortunate to have a great group of musicians that are loyal customers and that love to tell other musicians about us.

Music in Downtown Quincy
We have also had the help of the Historic Quincy Business District. It has a great website where you can search for downtown locally owned business and a map to help you locate those businesses. We have brochures in our store from HQBD that are even better than the website. HQBD also brings great events to Washington Park and Maine Street that spur growth and engagement with the community and surrounding area.

No, this isn't an ad for the HQBD. We just want to make sure you know there are great people and great tools in Quincy that will help you find and shop and eat and play in your downtown while also supporting local small businesses. Every dollar you spend in a locally owned small business stays in your town and generates six more dollars. When you spend at the big boxes your dollar only generates three dollars in your town. Money spent on the Internet never even reaches your local economy and is a small business killer for many.

For a short article on how buying local boosts our economy, read here.

Ask Sheryl and I for information on helping local musicians and see how much information there is in this town to help you out.

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