Now, More Than Ever, We Need Comfort Food

When Italian food cart, Sunny’s Carello, was struggling in the face of COVID-19, their credit union stepped up. Comfort food is back on the menu.

Amy Wright, owner of Sunny’s Carello in Bend, Oregon, serves up some comfort food. Mid Oregon Credit Union gave the popular food cart an SBA loan, helping to keep staff on the payroll and the pasta flowing.

5/19/2020

It takes love and dedication to make pasta — by hand — in a food cart. And who doesn’t need some homemade pasta right about now?

Opened last fall, Sunny’s Carello (carello means cart in Italian), located in Bend, Oregon, cooks up delicious comfort food, such as handmade agnolotti pasta, chicken picatta, meatballs, and polenta. It’s a labor of love that Amy Wright has pursued for nearly 30 years.

So when COVID-19 was forcing businesses to close or lay off workers, owners Amy and Courtney Wright reached out to their credit union for help.

Mid Oregon Credit Union answered the call with an SBA Paycheck Protection Program loan.

“A small business loan will help keep our employees on payroll and that feels good being able to not add to the high unemployment rate right now,” Amy said. “Our staff has been with us for a long time. Our sous chef, Darian, has been with us for six years. We brought him over from our other restaurant, Sunny Yoga Kitchen, when we opened the cart in November.”

Businesses like Sunny’s Carello are what make Bend a hotspot spot for locals and visitors alike. They contribute to the city’s culture and economy. Amy and Courtney work to source most of their ingredients from other local Oregon businesses.

“Amy is a very talented chef and her new venture, Sunny’s Carello, is a great addition to the Bend culinary scene,” said Kevin Cole, Executive Vice President. “She and Courtney have had the Sunny’s business banking relationship with Mid Oregon since the business started. We felt Sunny’s was a great example of the businesses Congress wanted to help with the PPP.”

Amy and Courtney have been Mid Oregon members for two years. They do all their business and personal banking with the credit union, where they know them by name.

“I love that!” Amy said. “It feels personal being a member.”

Since the SBA Paycheck Protection Program was introduced, Mid Oregon has helped over 176 businesses, providing $14.3 million and protecting an estimated 1,500 local jobs, Cole said.

“There is a sense of relief when they learn they have been approved. The ones that really hit home are the ones where the business owners tell us they can’t wait to let their staff know they can come back to work. The business community in Central Oregon has worked really hard to diversify and expand employment opportunities for people, and we are hopeful PPP allows us to avoid losing the progress that has been made.”

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