Carefree Restaurant Week

Pictured, L-R: English Rose Tea Room; Shrimp Diablo at Spotted Donkey Cantina at el Pedregal; Spaghetti alla Tarantina at Corrado’s Cucina Italiana; Baja Seabass at Keeler's Neighborhood Steakhouse; Black Mountain Coffee Shop’s Eggs Benedict

There is no doubt that restaurants are a driving force in Arizona’s economy. In 2019, Arizona restaurants created 310,600 food service and related jobs and were responsible for 11 percent of employment in the state. Cut to 2020, when, at its worst point, the industry was forced to furlough or lay off nearly 80 percent of its workforce and saw revenue losses in excess of $2.7 billion.

Closer to home in Carefree, local independent restaurants dug in to weather the storm. They got creative and adapted to the changing landscape. And while some restaurants closed — most are still standing and stronger than ever, thanks in part to faithful patrons says Carefree Restaurant Association president Jo Gemmill (CRA).

“We have all had a very tough year,” shared Gemmill. “We are so grateful for the customers who have continued to support us during these hard times, whether by dining in or picking up take-out. Finally, it is starting to feel as though things are getting back to normal again. Carefree Restaurant Week is our way of saying ‘Thank you’ to our community for continuing to support us.”

Carefree Restaurant Week is May 10–16

As a result of the success of CRA’s previous Restaurant Week events, the local restaurant group announced the return of its Spring Carefree Restaurant Week, May 10–16.

Restaurant week is an opportunity for all participating restaurants to showcase their menus at discounted prices. Some restaurants will offer a special lunch menu, others a special 3-course dinner.

Customers have an opportunity to sample new and exciting menu offerings and in doing so, continue to support their local restaurants.

“Unlike many other towns, Carefree’s restaurant base is made up of independent, family-owned businesses,” said Gemmill. “Therefore, no large corporate chains dictate menu, pricing or marketing campaign — rather, the individual business owner can determine the look, feel, style, concept and brand their own restaurant based on their own individual culinary expertise.”

Carefree Restaurant Week precedes Arizona Restaurant Week, giving loyal patrons and those that come for the first time, a chance to head north to Carefree for culinary delights.

For more details on Carefree Restaurant Week, including menus and participating restaurants, visit |CST

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