With the staff shortages in Missoula and across the country, it's tough to tell from day to day when places will be open. Or, as one of our listeners put it, "it's not an employee shortage, it's a wage crisis." Either way, you've likely noticed that restaurants are open sporadically, and only when they have enough people and supplies. The latest to announce shortened hours and a full day off is Missoula's legendary Double Front Chicken Cafe. As of today they are only open 3 p.m. to 10 p.m. this Thursday through Sunday, and closed Wednesdays until further notice.

If you've tried to get some late night food, and not even that late, like 7 p.m. or after, choices are very limited in Missoula, it's basically just Wendy's for fast food. An employee there told me that our local KFC is down to 2 employees total. And if you go to any sit down restaurant, it's a long wait and about a full 2 hours out of your day. Rather than trusting the hours listed on Google, I recommend checking recent social media posts, usually Facebook and Instagram, or even calling ahead, before going out for a meal.

You've seen the 'hiring' signs at just about every establishment in town. Some fast food places are offering up to $16 an hour, which still isn't a livable wage, but more than I've ever seen offered for fast food work. And good luck finding day care, there are no openings anywhere because there are no employees. That's entirely another subject though, I could really go off on what a damn travesty it is that we pay shit wages to the people who are doing the most important jobs - caring for our children. It's ridiculous. But if you are a caregiver interested in employment, just about every day care in town is hiring.

What has your experience been trying to get food in town? Have you been suffering the crazy long lines and waits, or are you opting to stay in? What a wild time, huh?

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