GERMANTOWN, Ohio (WDTN) – While many family and friends sat down to a home-cooked meal Thursday, a Germantown restaurant took over the cooking and cleaning.

The Florentine in Germantown started opening on Thanksgiving in 2018. The first year they served around 300 customers, this year it’s increased to 500.

“This year we’re cooking 30 turkeys, 24 hams, 240 pounds of meatloaf and all the trimmings,” Florentine Restaurant Owner Clay Alsip said.

The Germantown restaurant decided to start hosting Thanksgiving five years ago to give people a break from the cooking and cleaning.

“We’ve seen that there was a need for a place to eat on Thanksgiving,” Alsip said.

Since they started staying open on Thanksgiving, it’s started a new holiday tradition for some.

“We started several years ago with the family and everything like that,” customer Gwen Dellay said. “Our parents have gotten older now and they’re in some nursing homes. So we decided to carry on the tradition and keep it up.”

It’s no surprise people are choosing to dine out. The cost to cook a Thanksgiving feast at home is up 20% from last year, according to the American Farm Bureau Foundation.

The cost to eat out in a restaurant only went up 8.6% over the year before.

Alsip said The Florentine did not raise their price of their Thanksgiving dinner this year.

“We did not raise the price,” Alsip said. “We’ve seen a few price increases, but not as bad as what we thought was going to see. So we’d left it where it was.”

While this isn’t your typical Thanksgiving, the customers are thankful for The Florentine.

“It’s just nice to be around other people and don’t have to clean up afterwards,” Dellay said.

While the staff had to work today, the owner said the reason they started this tradition because some of his employees needed a place to spend their Thanksgiving too.