Marinia’s Country Café, in Wayne County, Utah, is one of the many businesses that received a Mainstreet Preservation Grant. Here is their story:

“Marinia and Gregg Ellett took a giant leap of faith when they purchased Marinia’s Country Café in January 2018, when the previous owner became physically unable to operate the café. As a cook, with many years of restaurant management experience, Marinia had been pulling double shifts at another eating establishment just to make ends meet. When the Country Café in Loa, UT went on the market Greg and Marinia knew in their hearts that it was time to make their move and go into business for themselves. They sold everything that they owned that they could live without, and with all the cash they could muster, went to their local lender and took out a business loan. Today, Marinia’s Café is a local landmark, serving locals and visitors alike home style meals much like Grandma used to make.

“In March 2020 and forced to close their doors to indoor seating by the coronavirus pandemic, Marinia and Gregg shifted gears and immediately went into survival mode. With a stiff mortgage, utilities and inventory to find funds for, multiple family members to support, and dependent café employees to maintain, Marinia and Gregg refused to give in and began to work long hours, shuffling meals out the front door, one by one, to keep up with their monthly mounting bills.

“‘The Mainstreet Preservation Grant monies were a absolute godsend, now we might be able to actually get some much needed sleep tonight, knowing we can pay our bills,’ said Marinia with an ear-to-ear grin when the $5,000.00 check arrived by mail on Friday April 17th, 2020.’”

Learn more about Marinia’s Country Cafe their Facebook page:

The Mainstreet Preservation Grant, provided by the Salt Lake Chamber’s Utah Job Opportunities Foundation, is made possible thanks to a $500,000 donation from WCF Insurance. The grant funds are used to support rural and/or minority small businesses in Utah that need immediate assistance due to the COVID-19 and before federal stimulus funding is accessed. These grant funds are intended to help businesses in the short-term. To donate or learn more about the Mainstreet Preservation Grant, visit