Md. restaurants react to new rules and regulations
MARYLAND – Maryland restaurants are doing what they can to get in compliance with yet another round of rules and restrictions announced by Governor Larry Hogan on Tuesday. “These additional restrictions and the loss of outdoor dining as a viable option has really made it difficult,” said President and CEO of the Restaurant Association of Maryland Marshall Weston.
At Oaked 110 in Snow Hill, General Manager and Executive Chef Michael Kane says he thinks the new rule requiring restaurants to close for dine-in services at 10 will push some folks to get out as early as they can and create a rush. Or, it could make others not want to go out at all. “Not only are we losing business because of the 10 o’clock, but we’re also having to turn customers away when that time happens because of the rush of customers that still want to come in and eat,” said Kane.
At Bull on the Beach over in Ocean City, owner Phil Houck says the new mandatory closing time may be an obstacle on the weekends. “It shouldn’t hurt us that much. It may on a Friday or Saturday night, but of course we’ll adhere to all the rules and regulation,” said Houck.
Meanwhile, the Restaurant Association of Maryland has their eyes on the coming months. Weston says the holiday season could make or break Maryland restaurants. He is encouraging folks to think about ordering takeout instead of cooking a holiday meal this year. “Restaurants will need this kind of support in order to make this holiday season one that can keep them afloat. Again, everybody’s just trying to survive,” said Weston.
Back at Oaked 110, Kane says they’re working on unique ways to encourage that as well, like putting together Thanksgiving kits for people to order. “Just trying to remind people that we’re here for them and we’re open,” said Kane.
Houck says his strategy for this year’s holiday season is staying positive. “I think Thanksgiving is going to be a great three day weekend – Friday, Saturday, and Sunday,” said Houck.