top of page

Terry & Rico Create "The Bando" Museum Style Restaurant to Feed and Inspire Forgotten Communities

The Bando is Art. The Bando is Food. The Bando is an Experience.

The Bando is one of Atlanta's newest restaurants that was birthed by two friends and educators, Terry Bartholomew and Rico Burk. They saw that there were many injustices and inadequacies in the school system and they decided that they wanted to do more for their community affected by it. They started taking Black male students to dinner and/or lunch to have conversations that they'd hope would inspire the young men. This would eventually become a monthly thing that grew into conversations with parents and a mentorship program that allowed them to do more.

"The reason why we started the Bando was to connect with the community through community service and different philanthropic work. We really want to give back by eventually opening up our own school or community center," says Terry Bradshaw.

Their goal was to create a space where the community can not only come but leave fed whether it was mind, body or stomach. They decided that a restaurant was the best idea given their limited financial resources at the time and knowledge on how people crave a good food experience.

With Terry's Atlanta influence and Rico's Detroit influence, it was a no-brainer that wings, their most famous being the "crack" wing, and Detroit-style coney dogs were a must-have on the menu. And in 2019, The Bando ATL was born. The term "bando" comes from abandoned houses given in poverty-stricken neighborhoods. When asked why they chose their location, they felt like they didn't choose the location, but in fact, the location chose them. They wanted to be in an area that was deemed "the hood" because they wanted to create something positive in an area that others would consider negative. Holding multiple roles, the guys continue to alternate between cook and host, while Terry serves as the restaurant's creative and social media director.

Terry and Rico felt as if people travel to experience other cultures whether it be food, art, music, or lifestyle. They wanted to create something that would be so appealing that it would force other cultures to travel to our neighborhoods and receive an experience, unlike anything they were used to. They have managed to take the art of food and design and create something beautiful.

When you visit, you'll see familiar things that connect you back to a memory in your life. From plastic on the couch to the big table where families would have dinner and the china cabinet where your grandmother kept her fine china are just some of the things you'd notice when visiting Atlanta's first Museum style restaurant.

Marketing and art have gone hand-in-hand to cultivate the perfect experience. Social media has been a major big tool that has drawn people to the location so much to the point where the restaurant has actually run out of food before closing forcing them to conclude for the day. Although running out of food is unusual to some, for these restaurateurs, it shows that they have accomplished a goal for the day and in turn can do something for someone in the community.

During a random day during the week, the guys offer free wings to their customers and have since fed over 1,000 people in the area. They have also purchased groceries for members in their community as well as paid rent for people managing to make a major impact in a short amount of time. This proves that with vision, communication, and purpose, you can accomplish something that would not only make you proud but change the lives of people both near and far. Having such a major influence in the community, there is no telling how far Terry & Rico will go.

If you want to support the vision visit The Bando online and in person at 3050 Martin Luther King JR Dr., Atlanta, Georgia 30311.


QG - Ernie Hudson copy 4.jpg
Tshirt image front.png
bottom of page