A generous gesture by the owner of a local eatery is attracting local media attention.
Sunny Qureshi, who owns Bagel Basket in Lower Saucon Township, says he’ll provide a free meal or bagels to anyone in need due to financial circumstances who stops by and asks. No questions asked. The same promise will be kept at his other restaurant, Dean’s Deli, in Riegelsville.
After Saucon Source published a Facebook post about Qureshi’s kindness last week, it went viral, attracting the attention of WFMZ-TV Channel 69 News, which sent a news crew to interview him about it Friday morning.
“Charity begins at home,” Qureshi said. “Our community supports us, so we want to give something back to them.”
Performing acts of kindness isn’t something unusual for Qureshi, either.
He said he recently sent a care package of blankets to India after a cold snap there left vulnerable residents in danger of freezing in the streets.
The segment about Bagel Basket is expected to air on Friday’s 5 o’clock broadcast of WFMZ’s nightly evening news program.
The sight of a television news crew filming inside Bagel Basket shortly before lunchtime attracted the attention of numerous customers, including Lehigh students Ezra Oshtry and Olivia Howell, who said their tradition is to visit every Friday. It’s a tradition they always look forward to, they said.
Qureshi is “always very friendly. He’s a great guy,” said Oshtry.
Part of the couple’s tradition is to share an orange juice with two straws.
And both praised the bagels, which are made fresh on the premises.
What else attracts Lehigh students to Bagel Basket, which is often filled with the college crowd when school’s in session?
In addition to being the “perfect spot for breakfast,” Howell and Oshtry agreed it’s a place to see, be seen and socialize for Lehigh students.
“It’s pretty widely known,” said Howell.
“It’s a social place,” added Oshtry.
Both were eager to sing the praise of their favorite bagel shop, and didn’t appear surprised when they were told about Qureshi’s offer to help those in need.
Bagel Basket recently reopened with a new look after being closed for a week for renovations.
The business is located at 1850 Friedensville Road, Hellertown, and is open daily from 6 a.m. to 4 p.m. Dean’s Deli is located at 720 Easton Road, Riegelsville, and is open daily from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.