HILL CITY, S.D. – Right in the heart of Hill City, an Italian-style family restaurant recently launched its soft opening. Mangiamo’s opened it’s doors to the public the second week of October and has already seen residents and out-of-state visitors coming in. But what may seem like a “new normal” to businesses that have been opened for years is simply a normal for a business that began in a pandemic.
“At first we were thinking how are we going to start a restaurant in the midst of a pandemic, where most restaurants are closing? We started getting feedback from community leaders, from community members, just from people saying we need a place” said Mangiamo’s owner Russell Leatherman.
Russell, who is a first-time business owner, says he watched closely the national dialogue surrounding COVID-19 for weeks leading up to the open. He and his family took in the feedback of neighbors and residents, and made the decision to move forward with a daily focus of providing a secure environment to all patrons.
“We changed the format and layout of our restaurant. We moved our tables far apart. We spaced people out. We check our employees for their health. We’ve got our staff masking up. We do heavy sanitation and all the CDC recommendations.”
Staff at Mangiamo’s have adopted the motto “People first, community second, and great food always,” and say they are committed to keeping their doors open all year round to serve the community.
“In a time like this we saw people closing but we stayed open because at the end of the day, people still need a place to eat. They still need a place to say, ‘Hey we can’t cook but we can still come and be a family at Magiamo’s’ and that’s what we’re proud of” said Executive Chef Ruben Amador.
The restaurant is prepping to provide curbside and contactless deliveries for those who are seeking fresh-made pizzas and pastas but are not quite ready to dine inside. There will be a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the official launch of Mangiamo’s on Tuesday, December 22 at 11am where the mayor of Hill City and the Chamber of Commerce are expected to be in attendance.