While restaurants across the commonwealth opened up in-person dining capacities to 50% Monday, Dave’s Sticky Pig in Madisonville closed its dining area and will operate as a drive-thru and curb-side business only, effective immediately.
“I know, today is the day that the rules for restaurants are supposed to relax,” Ben Webb, one of the owners, announced on Facebook on Monday, “and I’m deeply sorry to do the opposite. But family comes first.”
Ben, along with his father, Dave, and his stepmother, Jamie, opened the restaurant in 2011. Ben’s wife, Ashley, joined as co-owner a few years ago.
Dave has suffered several medical setbacks and close calls, including surgeries and deadly infections. His immune system is compromised, Ben said.
Since businesses starting reopening, Ben has watched people in the community become socially close and not taking proper measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19. He has seen customers at his restaurant not taking precautions.
“I can’t watch that any longer,” he said. “I love my business, and I love my customers, but he’s my dad. ... I’m scared of losing out on business, I’m scared of upsetting people, but his life is way more important to me than any amount of lost business or upset people, hands down.”
Following his post on the business page, Ben was nervous at first.
“I’m feeling better about things, as I see so much support from everyone,” he said Monday.
There is no word on how long the business will have the dining room closed. Just as businesses across the country try to figure out their plans, Dave’s Sticky Pig is too.
“I’m sure every small business owner out there is just as worried about the future as I am, and are probably carefully weighing every decision they make that will impact their futures, just the same as me,” Ben said. “I feel for all of them, we’re all just trying to get through this and come out the other side with everyone we know safe and healthy and our life’s work intact. Every bit of support any of us can get ... it’s all critical right now to the survival of all these businesses.”
Since the pandemic started, business has stayed steady, said manager Kristen Dennis. The business has recently hired another employee. There are usually four people working each shift.
“The community really came out and supported us,” Dennis added.
The popular BBQ restaurant is located at 206 Madison Square Drive and is open 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. Customers can order through the drive-thru or call 270-326-5100 to order. To pick up, customers can pull up to the entrance door and call the store to let employees know they have arrived.
In Hopkins County, four more cases were confirmed over the weekend, bringing the total number of cases in the county to 244, according to data released by the Hopkins County Health Department.
Of the four new cases, two are female and two are male. None of the cases are from long-term care facilities. Two of the patients are in the 41-60 age range, while the other two are in the 0-20 age range and the 21-40 age range. No news deaths have been reported in the county since June 19. There have been 33 deaths connected to the coronavirus so far in the county.
During Sunday’s update, Gov. Andy Beshear said Kentucky had 15,232 cases of COVID-19, which was 67 more than the day before. There were a total of 558 deaths announced, which was four more than the day before. Monday’s totals were 15,347 cases and 560 deaths.
“The virus is not going away yet,” Beshear said in a news release. “We see numbers spiking in states all across the country. We need to be vigilant so that doesn’t happen here in Kentucky.”
Beshear will host a COVID-19 briefing at 3 p.m. today.
• The beach, boat dock, restaurant, lodge rooms, cottages, golf course, campground and mini golf are now open at Pennyrile Forest State Resort Park as announced by Naturalist Haley Joseph on the park’s Facebook page. Prices at the boat dock are $8 for a half-hour, $12 per hour or $40 a day for canoes, kayaks, pedal boats and stand-up paddle boards; and $15 an hour for jon boat without motors and $26 an hour for ones with motors.
• In-person services by appointment for unemployment insurance is available in Frankfort. In addition, officials will begin taking the services on the road. In-person services will be provided today in Ashland and Owensboro. On July 7 and 8, in-person services will be held in Somerset and Hopkinsville. More times and locations for in-person services around the state will be announced as they open. Claims can be made at kcc.ky.gov or at 502-564-2900.
• The state resumed visitation Monday at assisted living and personal care homes, group activities (10 or fewer) in facilities, communal dining and off-site appointments. Starting July 15, visitation will resume in nursing homes and in Intermediate Care Facilities for individuals with intellectual disabilities.