Pandemic brings very different Thanksgiving Eve in downtown Burlington

Local News

This Thanksgiving Eve was definitely shaping up as slower than usual at Ken’s Pizza & Pub at the Church Street Marketplace, but Ken’s lead line cook didn’t view the occasion with doom and gloom.

“This time of year isn’t particularly busy for us,” Chris Faherty said. “We’re never extremely busy on Thanksgiving Eve. Takeout has been a huge help for us, though.”

Ken’s happened to be experiencing a few quiet moments when our cameras were present. However, Faherty said there are always people who want to save their energy to prepare Thanksgiving dinner by not cooking for themselves the night before. He also did not notice an especially sharp decline in Ken’s pub sales.

“With all the bars shutting down, people certainly want to go get a drink after work,” he said. “Support local businesses as best you can. I understand things are hard for everybody right now, but businesses are really struggling right now and anything helps.”

The struggle may be unfortunate, but it’s not unexpected.

“The governor has issued executive orders and decisions that people are being asked to comply with, and specifically in Burlington, that affects the downtown nightlife,” Burlington Police Lt. Brian LaBarge said.

Under normal circumstances, the BPD would have to schedule its available personnel on Thanksgiving Eve with closing time at bars specifically in mind.

“Under these current circumstances, we don’t have a bar closing, really, so we don’t have to dedicate as many resources to those downtown issues,” Lt. LaBarge said.

Bars that don’t serve food are closed entirely, and any establishment that does serve food in person — such as Ken’s — has to stop doing so at 10:00 p.m. each night.

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