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Pizza restaurant fills need and tummies in Dunbar

Writer: Drew Hill
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A new restaurant is bringing food and new opportunities to Fort Myers. A new pizza restaurant is opening in Dunbar, where there aren’t many options. The restaurant is already doing more than just feeding families.

From dough to fresh New Yok-style pizza, a new restaurant is serving up something much needed in the Dunbar neighborhood.

Michael Lorient is Quality N.Y. Style Pizza’s owner. “I’m here on Martin Luther King Blvd, and we are the only ones here on this road right now, or you have to drive all the way.. the way to downtown to get pizza,” Lorient said. “Or you probably have to go to Palm Beach Blvd. to get pizza, but right now we are offering you the fresh pizzas, NY pizzas, you can get it at Dunbar right now.”

Keesha Allen-Thomas is the Quality of Life Center’s performing arts director, located in Dunbar. “It helps the community because we don’t have any pizza shops in our community and those that are close enough to deliver,” said Allen-Thomas. “We’ve had issues with not being able to get pizza delivered to our facility when we needed events, so it provides food for our program, but it also provides food to families and individuals in the community.”

Quality New York-style pizza gives food options to the community and to the 65 students who attend the Quality of Life Center. Not only does it provide options, but it provides opportunities.

“We are able to provide jobs for our brothers and sisters, and also people out there who are just looking to better their lives and be successful with a company. That’s what we’re trying to do with this restaurant right here is to really help the kids in the community itself,” said Lorient.

Providing jobs for people in the community helps create a self-sufficient community center. “The building is able to be rented, and the restaurant allows us to bring in money, but it also allows us to teach students and our teens, especially entrepreneurship skills,” Lorient said.

“It allows them to see the business side of things to learn the operations of the business, and it also gives them jobs,” said Lorient. “We have programs where we can feed people, and people can learn trade, or people can just learn a whole new side of the business.”

Quality N.Y. Style Pizza is open Monday through Friday from 10:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.