Nearly a million government employees didn’t get their regular paychecks last Friday, putting a strain on households across the country. In response, communities everywhere are stepping up by offering free meals and services to lighten the burden. In the Denver metro area, several restaurants have responded with free or discounted meals to furloughed employees with government IDs. Here’s a list of participating eateries:
Señor Bear: Government employees with a valid ID are invited to enjoy a free bowl of pozole (pork, hominy, and red chile broth) and a beer from 5pm until close Mondays through Thursdays until the end of the shutdown.
D.C. Pie Co.: Thirsty furloughed employees are being treated to a free specialty cocktail of their choice with federal ID.
Citizen Rail: Kids of furloughed workers eat free at Citizen Rail through the end of the shutdown—just present your vaild ID.
Denver Central Market: Government workers here can get a free drip coffee or 50 percent off a specialty beverage (Crema); a free Juan’s burrito (Izzio); a free chocolate bar (Temper); 20-percent off anything (Tammen’s, Green Seed, SK Provisions, Vero, and Curio Bar); a two-pound package of ground beef or chicken (Local Butcher); and a free breakfast sandwich (Culture Meat & Cheese).
Modern Market Eatery: From 5 p.m. to close every Friday through Sunday through the shutdown, government employees can get a complimentary grain bowl.
Kachina Cantina: Through January 21, furloughed workers can get a free taco plate or Navajo fry bread with rice and beans along with a non-alcoholic beverage.
Great Divide Brewing: The Denver brewery offers buy-one-get-one beers to any furloughed employee throughout the shutdown.
State 38 Distilling: Golden’s State 38 will provide a shot on the house of Impeach Vodka for furloughed workers.
Sushi-Rama: The popular conveyor-belt sushi restaurant is offering a free lunch to furloughed government employees at its RiNo, Lone Tree, and DTC locations.
Le French Cafe: Government employees affected by the furlough can enjoy a sweet or savory crepe on the house through the end of the shutdown.
Annette: Furloughed diners at this Stanley Marketplace restaurant in Aurora can get a complimentary happy hour grilled cheese, dinner steak frites, or breakfast sandwich.
Oblio’s Pizza: The Park Hill pizzeria is offering free meals for government employees and their families. In addition, Oblio’s is hosting fundraisers on January 14 and 16 for furloughed families that have been hit hard: 20 percent of dine-in and take-out sales will be donated to the families; people can also donate online or with cash at the restaurant.
Big Red F Restaurant Group: The Post Brewing Co. (all locations), Jax Fish House & Oyster Bar (LoDo), Centro, Zolo, and West End Tavern will be offering a special “Furlough Lunch” Monday through Friday for government employees. The special begins Monday, January 14, and runs through the end of the furlough; not including tax and tip.
Crafty Fox: Through Wednesday, January 16, Crafty Fox is offering a free 10-inch pepperoni pizza and soda for any furloughed employee — valid for one pizza and soda per person.
U.S. Rep. Ed Perlmutter (CO-7) will offer breakfast and lunch Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. (plus additional resources furloughed employees might need) for the duration of the shutdown at 12600 West Colfax Avenue, B-400, in Lakewood.
Dazzle: The longtime jazz club is offering free meals to all furloughed government employees through the duration of the shutdown. This includes: a free lunch entree on Thursdays and Fridays, Saturday breakfast buffet from 1 to 1:30 p.m., and Sunday brunch buffet from 2 to 2:30 p.m.
Punch Bowl Social: At both its South Broadway and Stapleton locations, Punch Bowl Social is offering a 25 percent discount on all food, beverages, and games (including brunch and daily specials) to any federal government employee — running until the shutdown is over.(Does not apply to private parties or merchandise.)
Curry N Kebab: Federal employees and their families will eat for free at this Boulder Indian restaurant.
Precision Pours: Offering 50 percent-off any drink with valid ID.
Chef Kristin Hazlett: Personal chef Kristin Hazlett is offering a free meal to any furloughed federal employee and families, cooked in their home. Contact (719) 660-5065 for more details.
Lucha Cantina: Both locations will serve any government worker and families a meal from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily until the government reopens.
Kachina Cantina: Furloughed folks with a valid ID will be treated to a free taco plate, a choice of three tacos on corn or flour tortillas or Kachina’s signature Navajo fry-bread with rice and beans, alongside a non-alcoholic drink.
We’ll continue to update this list. Know of another place offering support during the furlough? Leave a comment.