WARD, Ark. – A pizza shop in Ward is back open after having to close doors suddenly due to a dispute on their lease.
The owners of Bernard Pizza Company say they had about a week to come up with a new plan to keep the business going.
Tuesday, final touches were made on a new chapter for Stephen and Alicia Bernard.
“We can’t believe we finally got to this point,” Alicia Bernard said.
Two months ago, the couple was blindsided with a notice to vacate the place they called home for the past 26 years.
“We’ve been doing this for a long time, and we didn’t want to give up and let it go to nothing,” Stephen Bernard said.
With an idea on paper and a tool belt around their waist, the two renovated an old car hauler into a food truck, driving Bernard Pizza Co. forward.
“We have been going every day ripping out the walls, running electrical, it was pretty much a total overall,” Stephen Bernard said.
The food truck is now parked on the plot of land where the couple’s new building is under construction.
The new location is not supposed to be done until March.
In the meantime, the Bernards are using the extra space to help other small businesses.
“We want to support other small businesses like us,” Stephen Bernard said.
They say the help from other small businesses in the area was what got them through hard times and now they want to repay the favor.
The Bernards are opening the space they currently sit on to other small business owners. They say anyone is welcome to set up shop on their land, free of charge.
“You always have good times but there are always bad times,” Stephen Bernard said. “Everybody has that struggle, so whenever you’re doing good, somebody’s doing bad, help them out.”
The Bernards say that any small business that wants to come out when the pizza shop is open is welcome.
The couple says they plan to do this for as long as the weather permits.