Missouri couple donates entire stimulus checks to favorite bars, restaurants


KANSAS CITY, Mo. (CNN/WDAF) — As the coronavirus pandemic hurts restaurants, the stress is hard to take for some entrepreneurs worried about keeping the doors open. One tavern owner says a kind gesture meant the world to her.

Owner Kim Moffitt says she was scraping the bottom of the barrel to keep Twin City Tavern alive during the pandemic. The glass looked half-empty with doors closed for more than two months and no money coming in.

“We had overbought for March Madness and Lent and St. Patrick’s Day, and we lost everything,” said Moffitt.

But Moffitt says just after the tavern reopened, she got something in the mail that was not just another bill to pay.

“So, I got that letter on Saturday,” said Moffitt. “Hold on. I’m about to cry. ‘Cause I was like bawling.”

A letter and check for $200 continues to move Moffitt to tears.

“It was fantastic,” she said. “It was really nice to know that there were nice people out there that cared about us reopening.”

It was from two regulars — Joyce and Tony Vietti. They live in Pittsburg, Kansas, but come to the homey bar and always sit in the same booth on Thursdays.

“We weren’t doing it for the glory or anything,” said Tony Vietti. “We were doing it to help these people that we, we consider friends.”

This couple spread the wealth to several other Kansas City restaurants too — each giving away their entire stimulus check from the government.

“We just didn’t need the money that bad,” said Tony Vietti. “So we decided to give the money to restaurants and bars and services we use because we knew these people were hurting.”

Moffit says they’ve been riding the COVID-coaster for too long.

“COVID-coaster just screwed us all up,” said Moffitt. “Nobody gets to see each other. Nobody can hug. It’s just stressful for everybody.”

But the check and this note felt like arms being wrapped around her in support.

“Thank you,” she said. “It meant the world, and I hope you get this.”

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