Fundraiser to support Badin restaurant impacted by fire

Published 12:11 pm Monday, July 5, 2021

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In order to raise money to help Tho Pizza and Hot Subs, which was impacted by a fire in May, the nonprofit Better Badin is organizing a movie event.

The Movie on the Green will be at 7:30 p.m. July 17 at 35 Falls Road, according to the Better Badin president Frances Whalen. The organization has its own outdoor screen and projector. The movie will be the 1994 classic “Forrest Gump,” starring Tom Hanks.

The event is being sponsored by Uwharrie Bank, which will provide popcorn for people to purchase. Water, soda, beer and possibly wine will also be sold, Whalen said. She is still in discussions with the restaurant to see if they would want to sell any food items, such as pizza, at the event.

Whalen encourages people to bring lawn chairs and blankets for sitting and viewing.

All of the money raised will go towards helping with the restoration of Tho’s restaurant.

A GoFundMe account for the restaurant’s owners, Tho and Phoudone Naovarath, was set up a few days after the fire and has already raised almost $20,000. The goal is to reach $25,000.

The fire occurred May 6 at 38 Falls Road, which was being renovated by contractors working for Tho and Phoudone, in order to expand their business. No one was injured and the fire was contained to the one building.

Badin Fire Chief Terry Eudy said at the time that the cause of the fire was due to an electrical outlet and that it originated on the right wall of the building. The contents inside the building were lost though the structure was still standing.

The restaurant, which opened in January 2017, is the “primary gathering spot for a wide swath of the community and it draws a lot of people from out-of-town,” according to Town Manager Jay Almond, noting the business had to close for about a week but due to community outreach, “they were able to reopen.”

“Anytime you have something happen in a small town, the ripples of it are a little bigger,” Almond said.

About Chris Miller

Chris Miller has been with the SNAP since January 2019. He is a graduate of NC State and received his Master's in Journalism from the University of Maryland. He previously wrote for the Capital News Service in Annapolis, where many of his stories on immigration and culture were published in national papers via the AP wire.

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