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By Hilde Kate Lysiak
Patagonia’s most popular coffee shop and restaurant is determined to keep the lights on as long as possible along with several other local restaurants –despite a nationwide effort to shut down all bars and restaurants in effort to contain the coronavirus.
Gathering Grounds owner Audrey Wood told the Orange Street News that closing the restaurant isn’t an option because people need the money.
We can’t shut down unless it is necessary,” said Wood. “We can’t shut down because if we shut down than none of us will be able to pay our bills.”
At 10:30 am about six customers were scattered throughout the restaurant sipping on warm coffee or eating baked goods. The shop is usually packed with people.
“It is already really bad. If we don’t get business than it would be bad. The Gathering Grounds is supporting five households,” an employee told the OSN.
Yesterday Phoenix and Tucson made the decision to shut down all bars and restaurants, but in Patagonia many restaurants still remain open. But Patagonia still remains open for business.
In addition to the Gathering Grounds, Wagon Wheel, and the Stage Stop Inn and Wild Horse restaurant all remain open for business. At the Wild Horse the virus has already had an effect on business, according to owner Gerry Isaac.
“We have already had a lot of cancellations because people don’t want to travel anymore. If it [businesses are ordered to close] happens, then it would seriously depress business,” Isaac told the Orange Street News.
Isaac says that if closed, the restaurant would hope to survive by continuing to do take out orders.
However, earlier today Crown B Taqueria announced on it’s Facebook page that it will be closed for the next two weeks in an effort to help public safety.
“The safety of our costumers and employees is very very important to us and we do not take this lightly! We appreciate EVERYONES SUPPORT!” Read a recent post on Crown B Taqueria’s Facebook page signed by owners James and Alexis Banks.
In addition to the Crown B Taqueria, many of Patagonia’s most popular businesses and tourist attractions have already shut down including the Hummingbird Sanctuary, Nature Conservancy, and the smoothie shop inside of the Patagonia Fitness Center.