The COVID-19 outbreak has impacted a number of businesses in the area, with Fort Bend County Judge KP George restricting restaurants to takeout, drive-through and delivery services in an attempt to reduce crowds and slow the spread of the upper-respiratory disease caused by the new strain of coronavirus.
Local barbecue hot spot Republic Country Club & BBQ is shutting its doors for at least the time being in light of the restrictions.
“This is a tough time for our staff, and they are tough folks, and good people, who love their jobs, and I’m incredibly sad they will be out of a job for at least a week, likely more,” read a message from the company that was shared on Twitter. “They are professionals. They are good people. They have families. This hurts. A lot. So many people helped us get this far, and these folks worked their butts off to make the place special.”
The restaurant will be closed at least through the end of the county’s local disaster declaration, which George announced over the weekend has been extended until April 3.
On its way out Monday, Republic Country Club handed out free meals to first responders until running out of food.
Leading up to the closure, customers showed their appreciation on social media while offering words of encouragement.
“Thinking of you and your team! We’ll get (through) this,” Jeff Gallemore wrote on Facebook March 18.
Beginning at 11:30 a.m. Thursday, after the restaurant restrictions were put into place, Republic Country Club had to close its dining room and focus on to-go orders. Workers were outside the restaurant at 11110 W. Airport Blvd. to serve meals to residents who drove up or ordered ahead of time.
“I was there earlier…picked up my orders…chicken plate and brisket plate….my chicken was awesome,” Louis Zamora wrote on Facebook March 19. “My friend is loving his brisket and he loves the beans!”
For updates on Republic Country Club’s future, visit its website at republiccountryclub.com or follow the restaurant’s social media pages.
“My heart aches for the many small businesses facing the same crushing odds we’ve faced during this crisis,” the Twitter post read. “Families, children, everyone is hurt by this. It might seem silly to you if you don’t own a business, but it’s our life. We give it everything we have. It hurts.”