Barstool’s Dave Portnoy Funds Café After Owner Gives Gov. Tom Wolf the Finger

PHILADELPHIA, PA - SEPTEMBER 21: Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf addresses supporters before former President Barack Obama speaks during a campaign rally for statewide Democratic candidates on September 21, 2018 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Midterm election day is November 6th. (Photo by Mark Makela/Getty Images)
Mark Makela/Getty Images

The owner of a Pennsylvania café who photographed herself giving Gov. Tom Wolf the middle finger received an influx of cash from Barstool Sports President Dave Portnoy on Wednesday.

Portnoy launched the Barstool Fund to keep struggling restaurants open during the coronavirus pandemic. So far, more than $33 million has been raised for 201 businesses.

So when Café Fresco Paxton Street owner Megan Elia got the FaceTime call, she knew this would be good for business.

“I cursed in the video a lot. My mother didn’t like that,” Elia told PennLive on Saturday. “I said, ‘Mom this is huge!’”

Elia’s story began when she decided to apply for the Barstool funds after a particularly rough day. A December snowstorm decimated takeout business beyond what Wolf’s mandates banning indoor dining had done.

Elia said she spent the day shoveling snow instead of serving customers.

While she was in the bathtub to soothe her sore back from shoveling, she was inspired to not only apply for the funding but include a photo of her and a co-worker sipping coffee on a snow-covered patio while “giving the finger” to Wolf in her application.

The undisclosed amount of money from Barstool would cover up to a month’s worth of payroll and rent expenses.

“I am so blessed,” Elia told PennLive. “Very, very honored. I don’t know how I got picked.”

And since Portnoy tweeted out the video of their call, business has been booming.

“I had people in here Friday I’ve never seen before,” she said. “This can do wonders for your business, just Dave saying your name. He can really make your business.”


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