End of an era for Donna’s Bistro

Donna's Bistro has been part of the Guyra Bowling Club for almost 25 years
19th Dec 2023

When Donna Kennedy was asked to help out in the kitchen at the Guyra Bowling Club she thought it would be a temporary role. She had been working at the club behind the bar and doing some waitressing, so thought she would lend a hand until someone else came along.
That was more than twenty four years ago, and last week she finally stepped away from the kitchen, cooked her last meals, and served her last customers as the owner of Donna’s Bistro.
While she will miss the regular customers that come in every week, Donna said she won’t miss the stress of having to be there all the time.
“At one stage I didn’t have a holiday for 10 years and I also missed out on time with my kids because of the demands of the job,” Donna said.
“It will be good to have my weekends back and to have more time to be with my family.”
In 24 years there have been a few changes, including the amalgamation with the Golf Club.
Perhaps the biggest challenge during her time at the club was the increase in visitors when snow was forecast.
“It wasn’t something you could plan for and suddenly you would have hundreds of people turning up wanting something to eat.
“Luckily better communication with the storm chasers in recent years meant we got a bit more warning so we could be prepared.”
Donna is proud that during her time she employed over 100 people, and many Guyra youngsters did their first paid work waitressing with her.
She even employed kids whose own parents had worked with her, and is pleased that the new caterers have taken on her latest bunch of employees.
After a few weeks off spending Christmas with family, Donna plans to retrain as a disability carer and hopefully work more predictable hours.
She also said she owes lot to everyone who supported over the years, and acknowledged the contribution of husband Danny who supported her both in the kitchen and at home.
“I couldn’t have done it without his support, and the support of my family and all the kids who worked here over the years.”