▶️ Local businesses wonder if weather, no indoor seating will work against them

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By MEGHAN GLOVA
CENTRAL OREGON DAILY NEWS

With no indoor seating and snowy weather ahead, could this be a tough season for local businesses?

Caleb Trowbridge, owner of The Podski, said the Bend food cart lot has been surprisingly busy.

“You know the people in Bend, and or people visiting, still want to go do things,” Trowbridge said. “They want to do it safely, they want to do it outside, and so they’ve been showing the support. It’s been pretty amazing actutally.”

Trowbridge shifted any indoor seating at the Podski outside, in line with state mandate.

Now that snow is picking up and his only choice is outdoor seating, Trowbridge said he’s just hoping for the best.

“Thankfully we’ve had a very mild winter so far,” Trowbridge said. “So, we did better in December and January than we thought, up to this point. So, now we can just roll with the punches, have a snow day, and I think people are still going to be out. Snow is better than rain.”

Other local businesses are also doing what they can to stay open.

Bevel Craft Brewing in Bend has added more outdoor seating and a tented area, and Crosscut Tap House is relying on their multiple fire pits.

Each of these businesses, including The Podski, have something in common – lots of outdoor space.

However, not every business is so lucky.

Jason Camberg co-owns The Point Pub and Grill in downtown Bend.

Camberg said they are limited on outdoor seating and likely can’t add more than what’s already there.

“It’s definitely a bit of a concern,” Camberg said. “I mean the snow is nice, I’m hoping that people will get out and want to enjoy it, but I think having the nicer weather that we’ve had has allowed people to sit more at the tables that we have. Rather than trying to just migrate right at the fire pit.”

Every business we spoke with is hopeful that Bendites will pull through, bundle up and make their way outside.

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