Restaurants prepare for snowfall, while adhering to coronavirus protocols

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WILKES-BARRE, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU-TV) — On the heels of indoor dining being suspended in Pennsylvania due to an uptick in coronavirus cases, outdoor dining is taking a hit as well. Last week, Governor Tom Wolf put out a three week ban on indoor dining.

Restaurants are left with only being able to provide outdoor dining or takeout over the holiday season. Mix that with a snow storm and businesses are in for a little trouble. But it’s not all bad news.

The Westmoreland Club in Wilkes-Barre has six ‘space cubes” that can stay up during the storm.

“They have a steel frame construction so they are able to hold up in even heavy snow,” said Robert Williams, general manager at Westmoreland Club. 

Restaurants that have igloos or space cubes are excited about the snow, even though they have to close tonight for the storm.

“There’s just going to be a beautiful winter wonderland effect after that’s all over with. All of the snow piled high, the holiday lights and the 25-foot tree, we’re looking forward to seeing what that all ends up looking like,” Williams said.

The Cork Bar and Restaurant has a similar set up with tents and igloos. They are set up for the storm, but the owner tells Eyewitness News the igloos can stay up, and can withhold up to 100 pounds of snow. The restaurant will monitor the igloos throughout the storm.

Restaurants only able to provide take-out and delivery during the indoor dining ban are also taking a hit with the storm right before the holidays.

“A lot of gatherings have been canceled, all my caterings got canceled, it’s just another hit to the heart another hit to the pocketbook in this holiday season,” said Rosa Belia, Franco’s owner.

Franco’s plans to close early Wednesday night and plans to open up on Thursday at 4 p.m., giving plenty of time for the roads to get cleared.

The city of Wilkes-Barre is asking for residents’ cooperation as the snow arrives. They ask you not to travel unless absolutely necessary. If possible, remove vehicles from the street, and do not push snow into the street.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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