RAPID CITY, S.D. — The lifting of COVID restrictions and an increase in visitors equals increased business for restaurants around the Black Hills region.
Restaurants nationwide have been seeing a boom, and Rapid City is no different. Owners and food service workers attribute it to the increase in tourism, as well as local patrons.
“It’s a day and night figure right now when we’re looking in comparison to last year vs this year,” said Que Pasa general manager, Myrie Oneil. “Business has been just booming. Business has been just phenomenal, like exceptional. We mean like a lot of influx of tourists coming through and the locals. And we can’t be more ecstatic about the business.”
“It’s been pretty busy,” said Rachelle Steinback, an assistant baker at Pistachio Pie Bakery. “The start of the summer we had graduation, and now we’re getting into wedding season. So, there’s lots of orders from all of that.
Some businesses are still looking for summer workers, but are meeting the demands of patrons and expecting an increase in workers during the summer break. For new brick and mortar restaurant, The Good Stuffed, much of the increase in business continues to come from it’s popular food truck.
“The restaurant has stayed pretty steady since we’ve opened in April,” said co-owner Jesse Lee. “The increase that we’re seeing is we’ve started our food truck events a couple weeks ago. So now, for the past two weeks, we’ve had our full on weekly events all back that are going full board. And we’re definitely seeing a lot of crowd increases in those. Because no one got to do anything the previous year, so I feel like everybody is coming out full bore this year wanting to get out of the house.”