LANCASTER COUNTY, Pa. (WHTM) — Discover Lancaster has joined up with the Pennsylvania Restaurant & Lodging Association for the Hope for Hospitality Pa. social media campaign aiming to boost restaurant sales with some friendly, luck-based competition.

During the month of April, individuals who spend at least $25 on takeout, delivery or dine-in food from Lancaster County restaurants and post about it on social media are entered for a chance to win a $25 American Express gift card.

“It’s meant to encourage folks to get out and hopefully support their local restaurants maybe a little bit more,” says Joel Cliff, Discover Lancaster director of communications.

Here’s how to enter:

  1. Spend at least $25 on food and/or drinks at any restaurant, brewery, vineyard, pub, etc. in Lancaster County. (As long as there’s food involved in the meal, it counts.)
  2. Take a picture of the meal.
  3. Post the picture on Instagram, tag the dining establishment it’s from, and include the hashtags #HopeforHospitalityPA and #DiscoverLancaster.
Sample entry

There’s no limit to the number of entries allowed per person, says Cliff, and everybody dining in Lancaster County can enter regardless of whether they reside in the county. Each week, two entrants will be randomly selected to receive gift cards.

“The foodservice segment, it’s really been hit hard,” says Cliff. “Things are steadily building back up little by little…and we want to add what we can to this time period for them, which is crucial as they’re starting to come back out, starting to see a little bit of hope and momentum.”

The Hope for Hospitality PA campaign will coincide with the 2021 Lancaster City Restaurant Week, which runs April 12-18, possibly adding some extra incentive to support local restaurants this month.

Individuals have stepped up to support local restaurants throughout the pandemic. In Facebook groups such as Lancaster County Take Out, people share their favorite dining spots and offer recommendations for fellow group members. Others have left generous tips for restaurant waitstaff, understanding the strain shutdowns and decreased numbers of diners have had on the industry. One local woman even created a campaign that raised money for restaurants while also helping support frontline healthcare workers.

Cliff notes that there is indeed hope for hospitality in Pennsylvania as the end of the COVID-19 pandemic seems to be in sight; more people are getting vaccinated each day and the state recently eased some coronavirus restrictions for restaurants.

“All of that…we hope can collectively push the ball forward a little bit further for folks in this month and give them some further light at the end of the tunnel heading into later in the spring and into the summer,” says Cliff.

The Hope for Hospitality PA campaign is also running in a few other Pennsylvania counties. Learn more about the initiative here.