A beloved family-owned restaurant in north Forsyth can keep its doors open thanks to help offered from the Forsyth County community generated through a GoFundMe page shared on social media.
Lori and Mario Jordan opened Lorio’s Wings-N-Things in north Forsyth in the Chestatee area nearly three years ago, seeing their dreams come true when community members from all over came in to try their food and spend quality time in the family-like atmosphere.
But after just a year of being open, the COVID-19 pandemic began, impacting small businesses and restaurants all over Forsyth County.
They have struggled to stay open in the community since, drumming up business wherever they could. But after a long struggle, they realized over the last month that they simply would not be able to keep the doors open any longer.
Lori and Mario both gave an official announcement on their Facebook pages that they were, unfortunately, not able to climb out of a financial hole created by the pandemic.
That same night, the community stepped up to help.
“We were overwhelmed with love just all at once,” Lori said.
Mario and Lori had spoken with a friend about having to post an announcement, and that friend immediately spread the word. Eventually, another community member created a GoFundMe page, which was shared across social media platforms.
Not only did community members from all over the county help to donate toward the cause, but many others also started coming out to try Lorio’s chicken wings, fried catfish and more.
“We’re a little bit older, so the whole internet and trending things, we’re not that familiar with, but people would come in and tell us what’s going on,” Mario said. “It’s like …. Wow.”
Just over a week after the GoFundMe was created, community members had donated more than $4,700 for Lori and Mario to be able to pay the bills and keep the place open. Even now, they said they can’t believe how much support the community has shown for them.
“Oh my goodness, it’s been amazing,” Mario said. “Unbelievable. I had no idea that people loved this place as much as they do.”
Now, Mario said they have no worries for the future of Lorio’s Wings-N-Things. Between the influx of business and the help garnered through GoFundMe, they hope to stay in business for years to come.
They said they will never forget the love and support the community showed them during such a difficult time. Overall, they want to continue to stay busy and give back in any way they can in the future.
“This was a dream that we’ve had for years,” Mario said. “We just want to thank and show our appreciation to the community.”