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Local restaurant owner creates drive-in dine-in

Purchase a ticket on the People’s Restaurant website, order snacks, drive into the parking lot, and enjoy a movie -- and all while snacking on the menu.

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — One local restaurant is turning the tables and hosting a drive-in -- in this case, a dine-in. 

Our Ashley Gonzalez shares how the owners are getting creative to help keep the lights on.

Joe and Hope Gonzalez, owners of People’s Restaurant and Lounge, have been serving the Coastal Bend since 2002, until this year amid COVID-19.

“This is kind of like our baby here, and seeing that we have to close the doors, it was sad,” said owner, Joe Gonzalez.

Joe says closing their doors was hard enough, but that was only half of the battle. 

“Having to tell employees, 'hey this is your last day, we're going to have to lay you off', that was even tougher, because a lot of people are relying on us,” added Joe.

Joe, Hope, and daughter, Veronica, came up with a way to hopefully keep the lights on and bring back their employees. 

They are hosting their very first dine-in where members of the community can purchase a ticket on the People’s Restaurant website, order snacks, drive into the parking lot, and enjoy a movie --  and all while snacking on the movie night menu. 

“We sold out in like nine hours, it was overnight. I did a post at 1 o’clock in the morning, and by 9, 10 o’clock in the morning, all the tickets had sold out already," added Joe.

Joe says he and his family couldn't put the full screen up until all the boxes were checked and they were sure the customers would be protected.

"We have this light that shines red or green. Red means it’s being used or sanitized, once the light turns green, then one family will be allowed to go in at the same time,” says Joe.

Joe, at the end of the day, does all of this is to open the door once again to the community. 

"Bottom line it is a financial necessity, having to do this," adds Joe. 

If you would like to support this local business and buy movie tickets, head over to their website for more information.

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