AUGUSTA, GA. (WJBF)- Augusta Black Restaurant Week is here and for some, food means community— a time where owners and chefs showcase the different cuisines they have to offer their community.
“I’ve been in Augusta, probably about 20 years, and this is the best place ever– I swear,” Dawn Brown said.
New and old black-owned restaurants are emphasized throughout the week, including one that has serviced the CSRA for the past 28 years.
“Highlight black-owned restaurants, sometimes they’re shadowed out. But, it’s a good thing to do– I think and though sometimes small restaurants don’t get seen. That would help,” Owner at DeShawns Seafood Shawn Thomas said.
Black Restaurant Week was founded in Houston, Texas back in 2016.
It is dedicated to celebrating the flavors of African-American, African, and Caribbean cuisine nationwide.
Now, in eight major U.S. cities, the movement currently supports more than 500 minority businesses nationwide with an economic impact of approximately $1.5 billion dollars.
Frank Mims says starting any kind of business, as a person of color, can be a bit difficult at first.
“As black owners, it can be difficult getting a foot in the door and getting started, but we have a thriving community here in Augusta, Georgia if you reach out, the help is there.”
These businesses rooted in the community have gained life-long customers– some who return a couple of times out of the month.
“Every two weeks I come down here, eat breakfast– I catch you on a Saturday– same attitude, atmosphere. Just a pleasant, pleasant guy,” Brown said.
Mims says as a community, everyone is there to lend a helping hand.
“If you’re a black person in Augusta, Georgia, there is opportunity for you to be able to do exactly what you wanna do as long as you have the drive and the will and God’s help,” Mims said.
Black business owners, in the area, say they are grateful to have a week like this, where their efforts are truly seen.