Wareham Community Rallies Around Santoro’s Pizza
This week on Michael and Maddie, we decided to begin a movement to #SaveSouthCoastRestaurants. The sad truth is that many of our favorite SouthCoast restaurants are on the ropes. If these restaurants fold, not only will all of these hard-working local people who staff them be forced to find new jobs, the SouthCoast will lose a piece of our identity.
Let's face it, we have some pretty great restaurants around here, and we have established a little reputation for it.
That's why it kind of caught our eye when we heard about a little dust-up in Wareham.
Now, before we get into the story, we are all in agreement that it is important to wear masks in public. According to the CDC, it is a very important tool for fighting the spread of COVID-19.
That being said, I feel like it's safe to say that we have all forgotten the mask in the car once or twice, and had to run back and grab it.
Here's where Santoro's in Wareham enters the story. As many in Wareham know, Santoro's is a family-owned business. It is run by the Lagokis family. We spoke with John Lagokis, who owns the pizza and sub shop with his parents, this morning on Michael and Maddie. He told us that his family received some tough news a few days ago: his father was diagnosed with cancer.
One of Santoro's customers confronted Lagokis about his mother not wearing a mask. He explained that she was finished working for the day, had forgotten something in the restaurant, and ran back in to grab it. Normally, everyone at Santoro's works fully masked.
Lagokis said the woman was already on her phone in the parking lot, presumably posting something on social media. She did, in fact, end up posting a complaint on a Facebook group in Wareham, but it didn't quite get the expected response.
Instead of sparking outrage against the pizza shop, the community of Wareham rallied around the Lagokis family. For the days and days, residents posted positive comments, photos and even memes about Santoro's, making a concerted effort to visit and spend money in support. In fact, business has been so strong since the Facebook post that Lagokis said he intends to thank the woman the next time he sees her.
Listen to John Lagokis's entire interview with Michael and Maddie here.