Monroe bar speaks out about the impact COVID-19 has on finances and staff

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MONROE, LA (03/18/20)– The coronavirus is causing local bars in our community to close their doors starting this past Monday. A few days into the closure, some bar owners are speaking out about their worries.
Tin Dog Tavern has been open for less than a year and shutting their doors to the community was something they never saw coming.

The party is over for every bar in Louisiana, as Governor John Bel Edwards order the closure of all bars until April 13th.

“A global pandemic was not something that I ever considered affecting small-town Louisiana business and especially as a local business owner myself. So this is something completely new,” said Jeremy Lucky, an owner of Tin Dog Tavern.

This news has brought worries and sadness to Tin Dog Tavern in Monroe. Not only can they not offer curbside service, they had to let the staff of 10 people go, and next month’s bills hang above their heads.

“The scary part is, you don’t know if you’re going to have something to come back to,” said Sherri Burks, Bartender at Tin Dog Tavern.

Jeremy Lucky, one of the owners, says this is a hard time to be closed as business usually increases during income tax season. People have the extra money to spend at businesses, that money being a majority of their income.

“Now we are seeing people hang on to that a lot more, which is not a bad idea and we understand that, but it’s affecting us more than just having to shut the bar down with other business as well,” said Lucky.

A Tin Dog Tavern bartender says they are remaining strong, but bartending is more than a job to them.

“You know I’m not their family, but I know everything about them and they know everything about me. I know all there jokes, I know every cheesy line they have to say and I miss them every day,” said Burks.

While barstools remain empty and the doors stay locked, Burks says she will never take her bartending job for granted.

“Girl, that’s going to be amazing I feel like. Just to watch that door open back up and for them to walk back through it,” said Burks.

Lucky says you can support this local bar by crowding the doors when the proclamation is lifted. Tin Dog Tavern will be having a band together event on April 4th. With it still being inside the ban period, they will be live streaming it. All the donation raised will go to support local bar staff in the area.

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