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Indy radio host Dakich creates ‘Carryout Thursday’ to lift up local businesses

Dan Dakich creates ‘Carryout Thursday’ to pick up local businesses

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — On Thursday in Indianapolis, there was a call for a pick-me-up during the COVID-19 crisis. 107.5 The Fan radio host Dan Dakich sidelined sports talk for real talk. 

“I want to go to those places when this is all over,” Dakich said. “We wanted to make today ‘Carryout Thursday’ where people, if you can afford it, call their favorite restaurant and order something.”

Peppy Grill, Fountain Square’s historic 24-hour diner, is home for Betty Stringer. Betty has worked in the kitchen there for 43 years. 

“It (local business climate) is very terrible,” Stringer said. “We have not had very much business because we can’t let people dine in. If we don’t start picking up some (business), we might have to shut down until this whole thing is over.”

On the other end of the spectrum is the iconic St. Elmo Steak House, which is a part of a massive operation of 750 employees.

“It (local business climate) is as bleak as it can get,” co-owner Craig Huse said. “On Monday at 8 p.m. we closed our restaurants down (temporarily)…It is a heavy weight to think about hundreds of families who are counting on those paychecks.”

Since the doors closed, St. Elmo has covered its March payroll. For now, every single dollar of St. Elmo’s gift card sales are going directly to workers. 

On Thursday, an act of generosity left the staff speechless.

“We had a lady buy thirty, two hundred and fifty dollar gift cards,” Huse said. “There are so many kind-hearted people that want to help.” 

On Thursday it was obvious — Indianapolis wants to help. And Dan Dakich just did.