McFarland faces a shortage of restaurants

February 21, 2024 /

By Bryan Contreras

Mcfarland, a town renowned for its tight-knit community, is currently having a problem with a shortage of restaurants — a situation that has led to concern among its residents. 

As many residents are seeking diverse dining options and newcomers lament the limited number of restaurants to dine out from, it has become a topic of concern. Over many years, there have been a select few restaurants that offered the opportunity for customers to dine in and enjoy their meals in a cozy, welcoming environment. 

However, as time passed, these establishments began to close down their dine-in services gradually. One such example is Maria’s Pizza, a beloved local eatery known for its delicious pizzas. The restaurant faced a significant turning point during the initial year of the quarantine when it made the tough decision to close down its dine-in services. 

This decision was primarily driven by their commitment to ensuring the safety and well-being of both their customers and the health concerns posed by the pandemic. Once restaurants started opening up dine-in, Maria’s Pizza couldn’t afford to reopen dining establishments so people decided to order and eat elsewhere. 

The primary reason why dining shut down was because COVID-19 forced many restaurants to close down, once the pandemic was over inflation rate rose which led to the increase in the prices of the products needed to continue making the food people loved; making it impossible to reopen their dining establishments. 

Lorena Ruiz, the owner of Marias Pizza, stated that before the pandemic she remembered high schoolers running with their backpack with money in their hands ready to order and constantly they were making pizzas because always inside the restoration there was full of kids eating.

“Inflation rose so bad before the pizza pocket used to be a combo with a medium drink after it went to a small drink and now it’s only the pizza pocket and drink is sold separately,” Ruiz commented. 

Today no one is going to Maria Pizza as often as before because of the reason for the dining being shut down and most students living on the other side of town.  As the world began to get used to COVID-19 and restaurants started to reopen their dine-in services, Maria’s Pizza found themselves stuck. 

The financial strain caused by the long closure meant that they were unable to afford the necessary measures to safely reopen their dining establishments. Ruiz stated if they could reopen their dine-in establishment they needed inflation to go down before they started making major changes to their restaurant. 

¨I remembered going to Maria’s Pizza and dining in with my brothers,¨ said Adrian Gonzales, a 10th-grade student at McFarland High School. 

He recalls how good the pizza was from Maria’s Pizza and sometimes he still goes for the popular order called the ¨pizza pocket¨. It’s a big loaf of dough filled with cheese and pepperoni inside.