Paul Shire’s restaurant, 2 Pauls City Grill in East Providence, celebrated its first year in November, but snowstorms and bitter cold prevented him from launching a value menu to celebrate – until now.
On April 12 – the date the Providence Warwick Convention & Visitors Bureau set as Do-Over Day – Shire is inviting customers to sample four-cheese lasagna, tuna steak with pesto risotto and other homemade favorites as part of that value menu featuring 10 meals for $10 each.
Shire said he is grateful for the opportunity to put this past winter behind him while at the same time inviting customers to patronize his restaurant and perhaps “do over” a dining experience they had to forgo because of the weather.
“Naming the storms didn’t help,” Shire said. “People were scared when you got names like Thor and Zeus. When I was young it was just a snowstorm. Now it kind of paralyzes people and prevents them from going out. [With the year’s anniversary just past], we were trying to build some momentum and we kept getting slapped back by the storms.”
The PWCVB has about 300 members, many but not all specifically related to hospitality, said President and CEO Martha Sheridan. The idea for Do-Over Day came from her marketing team, which discovered, among other impacts, that hotel occupancy was down in February. A storm on Valentine’s Day weekend added to that angst, she said.
Feedback from members and local businesses indicated that “the winter has been kind of rough for them,” Sheridan said, “and we thought, ‘Let’s not get down on it. Let’s try and do something about it.”
Although Providence has tried to be sensitive about imposing and lifting parking bans due to the snow, the obstacles to travel that come with bad weather “impact people’s moods,” Sheridan added. “When the weather is miserable, you’re inclined to hunker down and just want to stay home.”