Shut Up And Eat is a great, quirky little diner in the heart of Toms River. They opened in 2006, and have been named one of the best diners in NJ every year. They are also probably my favorite restaurant name ever.

Now, like many restaurants, the owners are struggling to survive the pandemic.

Shut Up And Eat got hit hard during the never-ending construction around Route 37 last year. Once the road was finally open, things were looking up, but over the past six months, Shut Up And Eat hit another wall.

The restaurant is small, and has very limited parking. They're not really the kind of place that can expand into their parking lot, without cutting out customers ability to, you know, park. People can't eat at a restaurant if they can't get to it. The restaurant has adapted to the times, offering outdoor picnicking, full residential delivery and a dinner service, but they are facing an uphill battle.

A friend of the owners has set up a GoFundMe to try to help them out. They have a somewhat lofty goal of $20,000, and after two days they've only raised a bit over a thousand dollars.

Obviously the best way to help out a local restaurant is by eating there. We know that the big chains can survive, but after months of restrictions, from total shutdowns to partial openings, it is the local businesses that are going to end up closing their doors for good.

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