North Carolina bars, restaurants battle cold temps as COVID-19 cases rise

DeJuan Hoggard Image
Monday, December 7, 2020
North Carolina bars, restaurants battle cold temps as COVID-19 cases rise
As temps drop and COVID-19 cases rise, many establishments are buying heaters to keep outdoor dining but are still worried about future restrictions.

RALEIGH (WTVD) -- Downtown Raleigh saw its first flurries in months early Monday evening as temperatures flirted with the 30s.

The ABC11 Weather Team alerted viewers to the possibility of snow flurries. However, the ground temperature was too warm for any snow to accumulate.

Much earlier into the pandemic when indoor dining for restaurants was merely nonexistent, and bars were forced closed, many establishments made the decision to buy space heaters in anticipation for colder evenings should further indoor dining restrictions be enacted.


"It's a little bit tough right now," said Clovis LaCour of bar Dram & Draught in Raleigh. "I don't think there's ever been a time -- at least recently -- that so many places have been trying to buy heaters at once."

LaCour told ABC11 he is looking into buying more but doesn't want to get more than what he needs given the possibility of more restrictions from Governor Roy Cooper that may force him to close his doors again.

Business owners brace for possible new limitations as COVID-19 cases increase

"It's difficult to deal with all those things," said LaCour, speaking of the cold evening temperatures and COVID-19 restrictions. "Working in this industry it's always just a fact of life. That you're going to have to deal with colder temperatures."

No word yet from Governor Cooper's office on any possible restrictions as the state struggles to keep its percent positive rate down at or below five percent.

Sushi Blues, Flying Saucer, MoeJoe's, State of Beer and Mellow Mushroom make up several restaurants in and around the Glenwood South district that can accommodate outdoor dining. Monday evening, the majority of guests opting to eat inside and away from the cold.

"The only thing we can do is tell people to bundle up to keep close to these heaters that we have," said LaCour.