Like many businesses The Fraternity Club is being significantly impacted by the COVID lockdown.
But pizza is helping it survive while the doors remain closed.
After being forced to cancel any chance of hosting a huge celebration when Italy won the Euro football championships, the club is surviving with the help of Federal Government assistance for its 150 strong workforce and takeaway pizza sales via a drive-thru service it started in March 2020.
General manager Greg Field said that was so successful during the lockdown last year the club had kept it going. And when the latest lockdown was announced four weeks ago the community knew it was still there and were quick to take advantage.
"Last Tuesday we did 215 pizzas on one night which we thought was pretty good for a Tuesday," he said.
"It has been good to keep members and customers engaged with the club during this time."
But the biggest disappointment for the club with such a large Italian membership was when Italy made the finals and became Euro champions.
Mr Field said at least 1000 fans would have wanted to watch Italy play in both the semi-final and the final.
"We would have had some fantastic nights if we had been open," he said
"It would have been a huge atmosphere. We had over 200 people come and watch Italy in the first game it played on June 12."
The club has also postponed some big shows including Marina Prior that 450 people had booked tickets for on Friday.
Mr Field said food will be just as important as live shows and gaming when The Frat reopens.
He expects gaming will take off immediately when lockdown ends but food is what the club is really becoming known for.
It will take a little longer for dining-in to bounce back but Mr Field knows The Frat's growing reputation for quality food will serve it well.
Which is why hen the club shut down with only four hours notice it was fully stocked.
"We gave that food to the Homeless Hub in Wollongong," Mr Field said.
He is confident The Frat will bounce back with the same strong community support it enjoyed after the last lockdown.
The club has again used the downtime to plan for the future and completed a couple of projects before the construction industry was shut down for two weeks.
That included improvements in some of the busier areas.
"We have done a minor renovation to the pizza restaurant," Mr Field said.
"During normal trade that would have been quite a disruptive job."
The Frat was also a finalist in the ClubsNSW Perfect Plate Awards, under the guidance of competition ambassadors and personality chefs Colin Fasnidge and Manu Feildel who gave its dishes a 'five-star' rating during a recent visit.
"We did so well they encouraged us to go to the presentation dinner on July 7 which has unfortunately been postponed," Mr Field said.
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