STOCKTON (CBS13) – Outdoor dining is once again no longer an option for restaurants within the San Joaquin Valley as the region’s low ICU capacity has prompted tighter restrictions amid the pandemic.
The regional stay-at-home order was announced to go into effect at 11:59 p.m. on Sunday.
Customers went running to Papapavlo’s Bistro and Bar Sunday evening to get their last chance at dining in-person for at least the next three weeks.
“I called and they said we are open for the last time and, you know, I wanted to come out,” Yolanda Arroyo said.
“It’s absolutely imperative. This is their livelihood and how they survive,” Amanda Bender said.
Surviving the stay-at-home order is the main goal for owners Jennifer and Andrew Pappas.
“We’re always worried,” Jennifer Pappas said.
Andrew added, “We have four kids and we’ve got a big obligation here. We’ve got numerous loans that we’ve taken out. Believe me, we don’t sleep much at night.”
They may be missing out on shut-eye, but shutting down outdoor dining is something they’re prepared for.
“We know the drill and it’s the only way to survive. And, that’s what we have to do,” Andrew said.
“Your stomach starts hurting because you want to make sure you’re delivering in the time frame that you’re saying,” Jennifer said. “It’s so much more stressful than just being able to serve out in the restaurant.”
Restaurants in Sacramento are still able to do outdoor dining for now.
“We all know it’s coming down. You know, we were thankful we could get this last weekend out,” Adam Pechal, chef and partner At Tiger Bar and Food Hall, said.
The latest figures on Sunday show the Greater Sacramento Region’s ICU capacity numbers dropped from 21 percent to 18 percent.
If they dip below 15 percent, they’ll be in the same situation as those in the San Joaquin Valley and Southern California regions.
“We were takeout and delivery only so it seems like we’re just going right back to where we started which isn’t the worst. You know, it’s a little disheartening,” Pechal said.
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“We’re going to do everything we can to keep going and be here on the other side,” Jami Goldstene, co-owner of Solomon’s Delicatessen, said.
Those on this side of stay-at-home order are looking forward to the day people can dine outside sometime soon and safely.
“We’re not trying to minimalize what’s happening. We’re just hoping that, you know, things can change and get better,” Jennifer Pappas said. “And that, if people feel comfortable to eat outdoors, that they could.”
The owners of the Stockton restaurant are incredibly grateful for those who came out on the last night of outdoor dining to support their business. They also credit social media for helping to continue garner business during these stay at home orders and previous tier changes.