Beltline Kitchen

Michael Klassen opens restaurant during COVID-19 pandemic

Michael Klassen was moving back to Calgary and opening up a restaurant. Little did he know he would launch strEATS restaurant in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic.

He played seven seasons in the CFL for the Montreal Alouettes, the Calgary Stampeders and the Ottawa RedBlacks.

This off season he decided to retire. Klassen was hampered by injuries and says it was time.

“I think it was just the right time for me physically to move on to the next thing and look at long term health,” Klassen said, in an interview with CTV News.

As crazy as it was opening a restaurant in a global pandemic, Klassen says he had few options.

“We had all the wheels in motion and then the pandemic hit. Like honestly the weekend before we took over this place,” he said.

“We weren’t getting any help from the government because we’re not an existing business, so we said let’s just go ahead and see what we can do. If we can make it through this pandemic as far as surviving, then I think we’ll be set up for a lot of success in the future.”

For a store locator and to learn more, visit:

Click to watch in CTV News.