OH students and staff revisiting favorite restaurants as county enters Phase 2 of COVID-19 re-opening

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Who hasn’t been craving a Mountain Melt from Miller’s Ale House? With Palm Beach County now in Phase 2 of its COVID-19 re-opening plan, the Ale House and other restaurants are anxious for more customers to return for their favorite meals.

The love for restaurants is one thing both students and faculty can agree that they have in common. Everyone it seems enjoys flavorful food, delicious desserts, and an enjoyable environment. However, over the past several months, restaurants have taken on a very different look. While the atmospheres of these restaurants have changed, the love the restaurants’ patrons have for them is still there.

As Palm Beach County enters Phase 2 of COVID-19 reopening, many regulations are changing regarding restaurants. For example, according to West Palm Beach’s Channel 25 (WBPF), patrons are now allowed to sit and socialize at bars with socially distanced protocols still in place.  

Additionally, restaurants can function at 100 percent capacity in outdoor seating areas.  These are definitely some big steps!  Olympic Heights’ students and faculty love going to restaurants for multiple reasons. The food is a big factor; however, the biggest factor is of course, socializing.  With that being said, many OH students and faculty have still made it one of their top priorities to go to restaurants with friends.  Some restaurants have made them feel safe, while others not so much. 

Some of the many restaurants that OH students have felt safe and comfortable going to include Chick-Fil-A, Miller’s Ale House, Vic & Angelo’s, and Hawkers. The main reasons they have felt comfortable at these places is because they ensure the customers that safety is their prime concern.

Senior Jordan Lanson who works at Chick-fil-A noted what her employer is doing to ensure the safety of their customers as Palm Beach County enters Phase 2.  She specifically noted that they have “closed all of the dining rooms until January” and “only the drive through and mobile app are available for customers.”  Even though Palm Beach County is allowing restaurants’ dining rooms to have 50 percent occupancy, Chick-fil-A is still keeping their dining rooms closed until January, showing that they are concerned for the safety of their customers as well as their staff.  “The team members are wearing gloves and are socially distancing,” Lanson said, showing that safety is a top priority.  

OH senior Shea Posner has dined recently at both Miller’s Ale House and Vic & Angelo’s and had great things to say about both of these places.  Posner reported that when she went to Miller’s Ale House “they seated people at every other table.” By doing this they were making sure to follow the social distancing protocols put in place.  In addition the staff also “wore masks” and “there were hand sanitizer stations everywhere.”  

Posner said that when she dined at the Vic & Angelo’s on Atlantic Avenue in Delray Beach that “they kept all of the doors open,” which made her feel safer since the air was being circulated.  Both Ale House and Vic & Angelo’s are very good at keeping their customers safe and happy, Posner being a prime example.

OH Early Childhood teacher and Little Lions preschool director Ms. Heidi Mansa has enjoyed and felt safe going to Hawkers, also in Delray Beach.  “The chefs and servers were wearing masks, the bathrooms were very clean, and the tables were [about] 8 feet apart,” Ms. Mansa said. She was also very impressed with Hawkers’ Asian cuisine, describing it as “amazing!”

Food and restaurants are definitely one thing that all OH students and faculty enjoy! It is noted that many restaurants have the ability to make their customers feel safe and comfortable even during such an uncertain time. There are so many more local restaurants that are taking the necessary safety precautions that would love to see their customers begin returning for a regular night out.

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