COMMUNITY LEADERS GUIDING OTHERS, BRINGING A SENSE OF HOPE DURING THESE CHALLENGING TIMES
By Natasha Bourlin
The pandemic’s impact is widespread, but the arts, animal-based nonprofits and children’s causes have been especially hard hit.
So, Chuck Shapiro of Wild River Grille took them all on using restaurant proceeds.
Not that restaurants haven’t been heavily affected as well. However, Wild River Grille, celebrating its 14th anniversary in June 2021, has been “super crazy busy” since reopening its doors in May, Shapiro says.
Along with his team, Shapiro has donated thousands of dollars to area nonprofits during the pandemic, garnered through programs instilled to help organizations in need.
For instance, restaurant gift cards were sold, with 50 percent of the profits donated to local theatre groups. Musicians were kept crooning through their virtual Summer Music Series.
Proceeds from the purchase of a specialty cocktail go to help keep the historic Pioneer Center’s doors open. In summer 2020, a vast team of plastic ducks were sold from WRG in support of the Northern Nevada Humane Society’s fundraising duck race. In fall, the Northern Nevada Children’s Cancer Foundation benefitted by WRG’s hosting of Natalia’s Night, an event to raise funds for families of cancer patients.
These are just a few ways Shapiro has directly impacted the community that helped make his restaurant successful.
“Wild River Grille has been this huge blessing and it’s done really well, and I’ve done really well, and it’s because of the community that always supports us,”
“Wild River Grille has been this huge blessing and it’s done really well, and I’ve done really well, and it’s because of the community that always supports us,” Shapiro states. “It’s my way of saying thank you and giving back to the community.”
Shapiro has humbly, yet graciously, received much gratitude from the various organizations he’s supported. Each cause holds a special place in his heart, and as long as his restaurant continues to thrive, he’ll help help local nonprofits do the same. wildrivergrille.com.