Toronto neighbourhood is helping raise money to support beloved pizza joint after fire
A Toronto neighbourhood is rallying behind a beloved pizza restaurant badly damaged in a fire.
The owner of Adriano's Pizza and Pasta, located in Etobicoke, has long supported the community, helping local charities and kids, and now the community wants to give back to him.
A fire broke out at the pizza place at 3329 Lake Shore Blvd. W. just after 2 a.m. on Dec. 2. Fortunately, no one was in the restaurant at the time and no injuries were reported but there was damage to the roof of the family business owned by Adriano Stolay.
Two community members, Jackie Goodman and Lisa Davis, started a Gofundme, to help support Stolay get back on his feet again.
From one small business to another... Let's help rebuild Adriano's Pizza! https://t.co/TwajAL31tq— Craig Hamilton (@BoaterSkillsca) December 3, 2021
Stolay is known as the "pizza maker with a heart of dough" for helping at-risk kids — sometimes offering free drinks or pizza to teens without enough money.
"His genuine kindness is just unmatched and felt so deeply," Goodman tells blogTO. "He takes such a personal interest in each of his customers and NEVER accepts tips!"
Davis says when she and her family moved to Toronto eight years ago from New York City, they were missing New York pizza. They discovered Adriano's made New York-style pizza right in their neighborhood.
"Adriano is from the Bronx, and makes it just like 'home'," she says.
Her kids love Adriano's Pizza and adore Adriano, she says.
"He always has a kind word for them and a smile — as well as a lollipop," she says.
Because of everything Stolay does for the community, Goodman and Davis say it wasn't a hard decision to return the kindness.
"When Jackie and I heard about the fire, we just knew we had to act to show Adriano that the community was behind him," Davis says.
So far the community is behind him — the fundraiser had reached well over half of its $7,500 goal on Dec. 3 – just one day after it is was launched.
Davis adds that her children, 7 and 10 years old, are also planning a hot chocolate stand fundraiser on Dec. 5 from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. on the corner of 39th and Lakeshore.
"To us, Adriano and his family mean community, and we are grateful they are ours," says Davis.
Goodman says Stolay is doing well, considering, and has been at the store every day managing the repairs.
"He is very focused on reopening as soon as he can and is just so grateful for all of the support he is receiving," she says.
The money collected from the Gofundme will go to help Adriano supplement lost income and rebuild the inside of his restaurant.
Join the conversation Load comments