BALTIMORE — It’s like economic stimulus fueled by a GoFundMe, and Urban Oyster Owner Jasmine Norton didn’t see it coming, especially when she got the notice from World Wrestling star ‘Big E’.
“I’m here on behalf of the Famous Fund, and I just want to let you know that you are loved and appreciated by your City of Baltimore, and I wanted you to know they’ll be extending $15,000 to help with all the COVID restrictions.”
Norton had tried to remain open at her popular location in Locust Point, but in July, Norton closed her brick-and-mortar restaurant and turned to curbside and carryout out of the Revival Hotel in Mount Vernon.
“We’re not actually making any money,” Norton told ‘Big E’. “We’re at like a 92-percent loss in sales from, you know, where we once were.”
The money to help pay her bills and staff comes from a fund founded by Jimmy’s Famous Seafood President John Minadakis.
“I know her grind and I know her story very well, and I was excited when the board recommended that she get the funding,” said Minadakis. “It was really important to me that she get the funding. She’s a very important symbol for a lot of young ladies in this city.”
To date, the fund has raised more than $300,000 from more than 1700 donors and has provided money and hope where there was very little to 18 local restaurants.