A week ago, a fire ripped through the Papa Joe's Italian Restaurant that was a staple in Brooksville for many years.
The blaze left nothing behind. Investigators believe it started in the ceiling after an electrical malfunction, and it could take more than a year to rebuild.
The community was devastated. Papa Joe's was in business for more than 30 years, employing 45 people – some who worked there more than 15 years.
Now, they're left without a job. The fire has also affected the gift shop next door because it was an extension of the restaurant.
Today, several organizations are coming together to help the restaurant owners and its employees. A Career Central mobile bus will arrive in the parking lot to help folks with unemployment, job placement and resumes.
Several upcoming events are also planned.
On Saturday, there is a benefit concert at the Live Oak Theater/YWAM. Special T-shirts with "I Love Papa Joe's" will be sold at the performances for $15 each, or two for $20. There will also be a yard sale in the parking lot of Papa Joe's from 7 a.m. until dark.
Later in the month, Spring Lake United Methodist Church will hold a fundraiser dinner Feb. 16, and there will be another at Hillside Baptist March 2.
It's proof of the impact these owners had in their community.
You can contact them through Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/papajoesrestaurant?fref=ts
FOX 13 / WTVT-TV
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