SPOKANE, Wash. — The Inlander is launching a new dining event in March focused on highlighting the local restaurant industry.
The Great Dine Out takes place between March 12-27 at restaurants in Spokane and Coeur d'Alene. Restaurants will feature three signature menu items like signature dishes, fan favorites, family feasts and more.
The restaurants will be highlighted in the Inlander's March 11 edition. Customers can find signature dishes, fan favorites, family feasts and more highlighted in the publication.
The Great Dine Out is designed to give restaurants and diners flexibility amid the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to signature meals, customers can also choose from meal kits, cocktail kits, entrees and more. Customers can bring their favorite restaurant home with them, or bundle up and eat out at a restaurant offering open air dining. Each restaurant menu will clearly identify what services restaurants are offering right now.
Co-owner and General Manager of the Inlander Jer McGregor said it was clear traditional Restaurant Week wouldn't be able to move forward amid the COVID-19 pandemic this year.
"As we got toward the end of the year it was pretty clear from the guidance that restaurants were going to be in a challenging situation, and so looking at restaurant week traditionally happening toward the end of February, we came to the conclusion it was time to move restaurant week later in the year," McGregor said.
Instead, the Inlander and the event's sponsors turned their focus to creating an event that would support restaurants amid the strict dining restrictions.
"Then we started working with partners from the past, talking through how would we support restaurants again and kind of an incredible concept came up," McGregor said. "What if local banks and credit unions got together and helped support restaurants through this most challenging time? And so thirteen local banks and credit unions have partnered together to help launch what's called The Great Dine Out."
The aim of the event is to allow customers to support their favorite local spots in whatever ways they feel comfortable.
Through the support of the event's sponsors, there are no fees for the 150 restaurants participating in The Great Dine Out. Sponsoring organizations include STCU, Washington Trust, Idaho Central Credit Union, BECU, P1FCU, Progressions Credit Union, First Interstate Bank, Banner Bank, Canopy Credit Union, Umpqua Bank, Global Credit Union, Wheatland Bank and Horizon Credit Union.
The Inlander is postponing traditional restaurant week until August. The event will be held from Aug. 19-28. The Inlander anticipates the full 120+ restaurant line-up to return for the event in the summer. Traditional Restaurant Week will also return from Feb. 24 through March 5 in 2022.