Loggers Tap House in Roseburg may be closed to sit-down customers and business may have slowed considerably, but these are still busy times for owner Sam Gross.
He just signed a lease to open a second Loggers Tap House in a development known as Elephant Walk on Main Street in Winston. The new restaurant will seat about 100 patrons and cover 3,900 square feet, Gross said. There is a lot of work to be done before the building is ready and an opening date is yet to be determined.
“The folks with the Elephant Walk reached out to us several months ago to see if we’d be interested in being tenants in the building they’ll be remodeling soon,” Gross said. “They will be remodeling the whole building plus putting in a bunch of parking in the back. We thought this was a great opportunity because we know the people of Winston already love our pizza and it would be great to have a greater reach into our community.”
Gross has owned Loggers since 2009. If planning for the expansion weren’t enough, Gross also has his hands full keeping the Roseburg restaurant running and overseeing “Feed it Forward,” a program he created in partnership with Avida Health to help people struggling to put food on the table during the COVID-19 crisis.
“Loggers has always been part of the community and we’ve been looking for ways to be more involved,” Gross said in a YouTube video he posted on Loggers Facebook page. “So we took the spark of an idea and called over to Aviva Health to see if they’d be interested in partnering with us. And then the whole idea kind of came together.”
Mark Tsuchiya, Aviva Health Development Director, said his company was happy to get involved in such a worthy cause, and hopes more businesses sign on.
“Its amazing to see the community come together in response to the covid-19 crisis,” Tsuchiya said.
People can contribute several ways. Gross created a GoFundMe account they can give to, they can come to the restaurant at 2060 NW Stewart Parkway, or they can call Gross at 541-671-2206.
Gross said $3 will provide a personal pizza and salad for one person; $6 will provide a 10” pizza and salad for two; and $10 will provide a 16” pizza and a salad for four.
“We’ve raised a little over $3,000 so far which translates into about 300 pizzas,” he said.
“We’ve gotten them out to some families and a number of first responders, and we are reaching out to nonprofits in the area to identify more people in need.”
One round of deliveries went to the Roseburg Public Safety Center, which houses the Douglas Public Health Network, a nonprofit that public health information and services to the community. DPHN is the agency that fields calls from the public who have questions about the COVID-19 pandemic.
Gross recently delivered a stack of pizzas himself to the DPHN call center office on West Madrone Street in Roseburg.
“To be recognized by the Feed it Forward program means a lot to our volunteers,” said Kim Gandy, DPHN call center manager. “These are people that don’t necessarily have the medical background, so they’re not being recognized for working in the hospitals or working in the clinics. To be recognized by our community leaders out there is huge.”
Megan Hooten is among those who have given to the Feed it Forward program. She said she is happy to help.
“I wanted to give to the Feed it Forward program because I feel blessed in my life, and because I feel blessed I try to give back when I can,” Hooten said. “It feels good to be part of something bigger when you’re social distancing.”