Houston restaurants offer free meals to families affected by government shutdown

As the partial government shutdown closes in on its 27th day, many government employees are facing financial difficulty after not receiving pay.

Many Houston businesses have been searching for their own ways to help, including Pearland’s Killen’s Barbecue.

Restaurant owner Ronnie Killen posted to Facebook on Tuesday that he was interested in finding a way to help the affected families and it wasn’t long after that Killen’s Barbecue announced the details of their generous offer.

Killen’s Barbecue is offering free food to families affected by the government shutdown. In an event they’ve titled “Furlough Friday,” starting Jan. 18, Killen’s will be offering a free family pack of brisket, sausage, potato salad, and beans to all Government Employees affected by the shutdown.

The food is enough to feed a family of four and they plan on continuing their support every Friday until the shutdown is over.

Those who qualify will need to bring their government ID with them to receive their free meal, while supplies last, and have been instructed to arrive at the west to-go window to pick up their food.

Other restaurants also helping feed furloughed federal workers include:

  • D’Amico’s Italian Market Café in Rice Village: Workers and one guest can eat free for lunch and dinner, Monday through Thursday while the shutdown lasts.
  • Bistro Provence in the Energy Corridor in West Houston: Free lunch Monday through Friday.
  • Ouisie’s Table near River Oaks: Free main course of any item on the menu for lunch any day of the week. For dinner, the restaurant is offering any main course offering up to $30 at no cost.
  • Rainbow Lodge on White Oak Bayou: Get a free bowl of Smoked Duck Gumbo from 11:30 a.m. until 3 p.m. Tuesday through Friday until the government reopens.
  • Poitin in Washington Avenue Arts District: Free bar menu food Monday through Friday during happy hour from 3 p.m. – 6 p.m.
  • The Bread Man Baking Company: Government employees with proper credentials/ID can receive a free loaf of artisan bread on Friday, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., and Saturday from 8 a.m. to noon. Located at 9127 Stella Link Rd.
  • Lasagna House: Grab some lasagna or a free pasta bowl and a glass of iced tea on Friday
  • Kids Meals: Families financially impacted by the partial government shutdown and struggling to feed their children can turn to Kids’ Meals for free, healthy meals for their children under 6-years-old.

Furloughed workers will be requested to show their federally-issued government ID.

Also, if you or another federal government employee are forced to seek charitable food after missing a paycheck, visit Hunger Free America, a nonprofit group helping people locate free food.

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