The Tides Tavern is one of the most recognizable and revered restaurants on the Puget Sound waterfront, located in downtown Gig Harbor, Washington. Since 1973, patrons have enjoyed the waterfront deck and their fish and chips, among other favorite menu items. Stick around long enough and you might bump into Stella and Mac, a pair of Canadian geese that nest in the restaurant’s planter boxes every spring.

But 2020 wasn’t the year to catch up with the unlikely patrons. Like so many of those in the restaurant industry, Stanley struggled with the downturn in business caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Worst of all, he had to furlough or lay off many of his employees, creating an air of uncertainty for the community staple.

The community has stuck with the Tides Tavern, though. “We have had to-go orders placed by businesses for their entire staff, large tips left by generous customers, gift certificate & retail purchases and, most appreciated by all, big smiles and patience,” says Stanley. “Though this continues to be a challenge, our community has been so wonderful and I wish I could thank everyone personally.”

So when his banker asked if he wanted to be a partner in Columbia Bank’s Pass It On Project, he jumped at the opportunity. Excited by the idea of giving back to the community that has supported them in such tough times, The Tides Tavern is providing meals and gift cards to the Downtown Waterfront Alliance, Kitsap Alliance, and Centerfront, a handful of community and youth organizations, and Columbia Bank is picking up the tab.

“I love this concept and the positivity that this program promotes,” he said. “My hope is that this idea not only continues at Columbia Bank, but that it inspires other businesses to create similar programs. Programs like this can help us remember to take the time to give back to the community that supports us.”