Nick Violas says watching his restaurant and life’s work burn to the ground before his eyes was the worst day of his life, but it didn’t keep him down long.
“Immediately after the fire, we came up with a plan. How do we keep our employees, and how do we rebuild? Within twenty four hours we put everything into motion,” said Violas.
He helped his more than two dozen employees find work while he worked to rebuild. It cost him his house, and liquidating his and his brother’s assets, but still violas felt it was the right choice to rebuild.
“There’s people you have who work for you that you feel like you owe, and the community you love that you want to get back to, plus I’m fifty years old. I don’t know what job I’d get,” said Violas.
Twenty-three of his twenty-five former employees came back to Nolan’s.
“All the employees stayed together this whole past year and it’s been really welcoming for everyone to be able to come back,” said Kristen Harter, a Nolan’s employee.
Violas said the city of Canandaigua and Canandaigua National bank also stepped in to make sure Nolan’s owners and the restaurant’s employees could get back to serving the community they love.
“It’s great to know the community is behind us, but also our staff is behind us. They’ve all returned and put in extra hours wherever we’ve needed help,” said Harter.
The restaurant officially opens to the public on October 15th.