Sunday, April 14, 2024

UPDATE: Community Rallies Support for Beloved Williamsburg Pizza Cafe

UPDATE: Chilly air and drizzly rain did not keep the community away on Monday, Jan. 1 for a fundraiser to benefit Bellissimo Pizza at The Virginia Beer Company (VBC) with Bald Guy Pies.

On Christmas Day, Bellissimo Pizza owner Peter Micali and his family were heading home from a family gathering when they were involved in a car accident on Interstate 64. The accident left the family seriously injured and hospitalized, and the cafe is currently closed while the family recovers.

At the event, Bald Guys Pies sold out of 200 pizzas in five and a half hours.

Bald Guys Pies posted about the event on Bellismos Pizza’s Facebook saying, “That was a blast! Thank you all for your patience and understanding! Hope the food was delicious! We have over $300 heading to the fund! Still have to figure the rest of the sales up but so stoked that we were able to help!”

The Virginia Beer Company stated on their Facebook page, “Thanks to your support, we’ll be making a $2k donation to help support Bellissimo and their crew as they recuperate and prep to reopen over the coming weeks.”

The community support has spilled out to several other locally owned businesses.

Little Charlies Pizza, which donated 15% of its Dec. 31 sales stated, “In times of hardship, it is important for communities to come together to offer support and assistance. As a small business, we understand the importance of community and the impact that unforeseen events can have on individuals and families. We would like to express our empathy by contributing to alleviate some of the financial burdens Bellissimo Pizza may be facing.”

New York Deli & Pizza announced it will be donating a portion of sales from Wednesday, Jan. 3 to help cover expenses for the Micalis. The deli is open from 11 a.m. until 9 p.m. on that day.

Locally owned and operated Highway Pizza is also collecting donations to support its fellow pizzeria.

“Beyond words. That’s all I can say. The generosity, kindness, and compassion my family and I have felt from you, the Williamsburg community is overwhelming,” was posted on Bellissimo Pizza’s Facebook page.

A GoFundMe campaign is still open and raising funds for the family.

Original story posted Dec. 30

WILLIAMSBURG — On Christmas Day, local small business owner Peter Micali and his family were heading home from a family gathering when they were involved in a car accident on Interstate 64.

The accident left the family, who operate Bellissimo Pizza off Mooretown Road, seriously injured and hospitalized, according to the business’s Facebook page.

The beloved pizza cafe is currently closed while the family recovers.

A statement made by Micali, on the Bellissimo Pizza Facebook page said, “I’m not sure how long I’ll be out. I just spoke to my doctor and she told me to expect to be out six to eight weeks. That’s too long for me. I’m gonna do everything I can to get back there sooner.”

Community support for the small business has been growing since the news of the accident, with many locals asking how to assist the family.

A GoFundMe campaign was set up to assist with medical costs, as well as to help cover operations and employee salaries while Bellissmo Pizza is closed. It currently has more than 235 supporters.

The Virginia Beer Company (VBC) a longtime collaborative partner with Bellissimo Pizza, has also set up a fundraiser to assist the Micalis with local pizza food truck Bald Guy’s Pies.

“Our relationship goes back as far as 2012,” said VBC Co-Founder Chris Smith. “In 2020, we created an Italian Pilsner and named it Bellissimo in honor of them. We love the partnership. It is a relationship that has grown over time. They sell our beer and are very supportive of VBC. When we saw the news, we knew we had to do something.”

Robby Willey, VBC Co-Founder, added, “We have a long-standing relationship with the (Bellissimo) crew and were very sorry to hear about the unfortunate accident on Christmas night. We are here to do what we can to help them during this time of need.”

The VBC taproom will be open from noon until 9 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 1, with the brewery donating 30% of sales that day to Bellissimo Pizza. Bald Guys Pies will also be participating by donating 10% of sales.

“Our mantra is Beer, People, Purpose. And, we try to live that. When we see people in our community, directly in need, we want to jump into action and partner with others to help,” said Smith.

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