Mayfield Village restaurant makes adjustments to stay open

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Makayla DePinto

Since mid-March, Pizzazz employees have been offering curbside pickup to limit traffic in the lobby of their restaurant. Employee Katelyn Kasprisin said, "I think curbside pickup is a safe and effective way to keep business running while keeping everyone safe.”

Makayla DePinto, Staff Writer

While many businesses are closing because of lack of income and inability to follow governmental guidelines, restaurants like Pizzazz Pizzeria in Mayfield Village are making adjustments to remain open.

Val Gaspar, owner and manager of Pizzazz, has set rules and regulations that all of her employees must follow in order to work. She said, “We have had many changes to adapt to our new environment due to Coronavirus. We have limited business to curbside pickup and delivery only, we don’t allow customers inside the restaurant, and our staff is required to wear masks and gloves more frequently than before this crisis.”

Gaspar, having a business with over 80 employees at one location, has seen many different reactions in her workers due to Coronavirus. She said, “Some feel the precations are unnecessary and have no hesitation being at work while others have stated they are not comfortable coming to work. Many have really stepped up and have been a huge help, while others will not or cannot come into work because they don’t want to lose unemployment compensation.”

Junior Jaiden Varanese has been working at Pizzazz since May 2019 and thinks Gaspar has taken the necessary precautions to limit unneeded contact between workers and customers. She said, “I feel very safe and protected in my working environment and I believe that they are taking the needed precautions for this pandemic.”

In order to stay safe while at work and at home, Varanese said, “I wear a mask and gloves while I am at work and when I am done, I strip the gloves off and then throw them away before getting into my car. Before I touch anything I wipe down my hands and everything that I touched in my car.”

Senior Katelyn Kasprisin is very grateful that she is still able to work at Pizzazz during these times. She said, “Although I don’t love the conditions I’m working in right now, I’m lucky that I am still able to work since many people have been put out of work. Obviously, the conditions aren’t the best and that’s what to be expected, but it’s all new to everyone, so nobody really knows what to expect.”

In addition to wearing masks and gloves, Kasprisin said there have been other changes to her responsibilities. “We are constantly cleaning surfaces where people are touching, but the biggest change I’ve had at work since the Coronavirus was that we now do curbside pickup which has totally changed my entire job,” she said.

Senior Marlee Snider also works at Pizzazz and said they’ve kept busy with curbside pickup orders and deliveries.  “We have to either place [the food] inside the trunks or windows of their cars for curbside pick up. While for deliveries, drivers are not allowed to come into any contact so they have to leave the food on the doorstep and that customer must leave the money out or pay over the phone,” said Snider.

Kasprisin takes the extra step while outside of work and at work to make sure she is staying healthy. She said, “I try to wipe my phone down a few times a day, especially after coming home from work, the same with my keys.”

The rest of the employees also make sure to follow the guidelines the government and workplace have created. Snider said, “When I leave work I usually take my dirty gloves off right after I punch out, then when I get into my car I wipe everything down that was touched. While I’m at work I change my gloves frequently, wipe everything in the runner’s area often, and try not to stand too close to people.”

Snider feels her work environment is a great place to be in. “My job is taking extra effort into staying cautions because of the rules that are set in place to keep both workers and customers safe,” she said.

Pizzazz Pizzeria is located at 839 Som Center Road. Orders can be placed online at http://pizzazzpizzeria.com or by calling 440.461.2233.