Bay Area

Freebies, resources for furloughed federal workers in the Bay Area

BAY AREA (KRON) -- The federal government shutdown is nearing its fifth week with no apparent end in sight, leaving hundreds of thousands of federal workers without paychecks -- including many in the Bay Area.

Numerous Bay Area businesses and organizations have stepped up to help those affected, offering free meals and services throughout the duration of the shutdown. 

The San Francisco Zoo is offering free admission for furloughed federal workers. Employees are simply asked to show a federal ID card.  The zoo is also charging kids 14 and under $0.90 for admission through January as part of its 90th anniversary promotion. 

UC Berkeley Athletics is offering free admission for federal workers during the shutdown. Furloughed workers can recieve two complimentary tickets per sporting event at the campus. 

San Francisco's Lefty O'Douls is also giving free all-you-can-eat lunch and dinner buffets for federal employees and their families everyday, until the end of the shutdown. The promotion began Jan. 16 and is ongoing. The restaurant is located on Jefferson Street on Fisherman's Wharf. 

A french bakery in San Francisco has created what its calling a "shutdown shelf," where people can pick up free pastries and breads daily. The cafe, Le Marais Bakery, has two locations helping impacted workers -- in the Castro and Marina districts. Those affected can stop by between 6 p.m. and 7 p.m. daily to pick up bread and pastries. 

St. Anthony's in San Francisco is also offering resources, serving hot meals daily and encouraging workers to use its grocery pantry. The organization also offers a free clothing program and medical clinic -- all available to federal workers going without pay. 

In the North Bay, Coast Guard workers without a paycheck can get a free cup of coffee and discounted food at Acre Coffee. The coffeshop has locations in Petaluma and Santa Rosa.

Michael's Sourdough Sandwiches, with locations in the North Bay, is also giving free sandwiches to Coast Guard members until the government shutdown ends. 

Amy's Drive Thru in Rohnert Park is helping out as well, offering free burgers and half-off meals to workers.

The partial government shutdown began Dec. 22. The president is expected to make a "major announcement" Saturday, as the shutdown nears its fifth week. 

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