LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – One lexington restaurant that says it’s already battling eviction without even taking winter into account.
This winter many restaurants are looking to tents and heaters to winterize a patio to keep customers who prefer a COVID friendly option.
But for some customers even that might not be enough to encourage the usual ‘patio crowd.’
Old Vine Bistro owner Larry Dean says he tried a tent to fight the cold but the patio is too small so it doesn’t allow enough distance.
For inside dining, it received a grant from several local organizations to install an air filtration system.
While that helps, it’s not helping enough.
“Lexington has always had a nice dining scene and different styles of food, atmosphere, diversity that we’ve always had and I’m afraid we may lose that if this continues on,” Dean said.
Dean says he’s still hopeful about the possibility of federal money coming from the RESTAURANTS Act but it’s unclear if or when that would pass.
In the mean time, there’s a GoFundMe set up to help pay the rent for this month and next.
It’s raised just over $600 dollars with a ten thousand dollar goal.
“Stress, doubt, just trying to figure out a way to keep everybody working.” Dean said.
This comes as lexington is in a red zone, a time when the governor recommends carry out only.
Dean feels the way a lot of restaurant owners say they do, torn between following the governor’s recommended take out only option and keeping the restaurant doors open.
He also says it’s about what you’re comfortable with, whether that’s carrying out or dining in. He’s says they’ve done everything that they can to make the experience a healthy and safe one during a pandemic.