Ben's Chili Bowl joined thousands of businesses nationwide on Feb. 16 to support the "Day Without Immigrants" demonstration in protest of the Trump administration's stance on immigration. (Travis Riddick/The Washington Informer)
**FILE** Ben's Chili Bowl on U Street in northwest D.C. (Travis Riddick/The Washington Informer)

After public outcry over an extended wait time regarding its application for emergency funding from Congress’s $2 trillion stimulus package, Ben’s Chili Bowl, a longtime staple in the District of Columbia, has been approved for a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan.

The landmark restaurant on U Street in Northwest, as well as Virginia Ali family’s other locations in the D.C. region will receive a loan to help the 62-year-old business stay afloat after loss of revenue due to the coronavirus pandemic. The family eventually closed all locations except the U Street business, forcing it to operate with a skeleton crew.

“We have Ben’s Chili Bowl here, we have Nats Park, FedEx Field, Horseshoe Casino and we have Capital One Arena,” Virginia’s son Sage Ali told WJLA (Channel 7) on April 21. “We were looking to really have our best year yet. All of a sudden, this hit and it just took in a very, very different direction.”

Ali and his team initially applied in late March for a PPP loan after Congress passed a historic bill which included $349 billion allocated to small businesses.

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WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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