▶️ Crook Co. restaurant employees eager to return, welcome back customers

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By STEELE HAUGEN
CENTRAL OREGON DAILY NEWS

The Horseshoe Tavern laid off eight employees when it closed during the second COVID lockdown in November.

“It was drastic,” Cassey, a bartender there said. “It was awful. It was scary.”

Some good news though on Tuesday as Gov. Kate Brown announced Crook County would move to the “High Risk” category on Friday.

The upgrade means restaurants and bars there can reopen with limited capacity.

“It’s exciting, but still scary trying to get things back up and still the unknown, you know,” Cassey said.

“What’s going to happen later,” co-worker and bartender Summer said. “(Will it happen) Again?”

Horseshoe Tavern Manager Shelley Nelson says reopening with so little notice is not easy.

“Absolutely, there is an extra level of stress,” Nelson added. “I tossed and turned a lot last night thinking, ‘oh my gosh I’ve got to do this and that’.”

Owner of Club Pioneer and Dillon’s Grill Jim Roths is overjoyed with the news.

“Yes,” Roths screamed in joy. “We are opening for indoor dining! I am so excited!”

“It’s the difference between closing and succeeding,” he added.

Club Pioneer, Dillon’s Grill and the Horseshoe Tavern all plan to open Friday.

“Just to be able to work again you know,” Cassey said.

“I love it here,” Summer said.

Deschutes County remains at high risk, Jefferson County extreme.

The next update to county risk levels will be announced March 9.

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