Eateries Across Maine Adapt to COVID-19 Restrictions
Like an instant tidal wave of doom, coronavirus came crashing down on the U.S. at the beginning of March, and flipped a switch, bringing almost everything across the nation to a standstill. With orders to not gather in groups and to stay home, many businesses were forced to close their doors unless you provided an essential service, like food.
But how would restaurants be able to provide food to their customers, if their customers weren't allowed inside the buildings?
That's where folks started to get creative, and changed the game of the food and beverage industry.
Locally, one of the first and quickest places to adapt to regulations was Harvest Moon Deli. Within what felt like hours, Harvest Moon's management put notices out across social media, and even updated their commercials to reflect their new way of doing things. They stopped handling cash altogether, and made it easy for customers to order and pay for their sandwiches right online or on their phones. While they closed their stores to walk-up business, their patrons were encouraged to come park outside their shops and call when they arrived. Then their food was brought out their vehicles, to ensure everyone stayed apart and safe.
Another Bangor business that started to make changes to the way it did things was SweetFrog. Creating special bundles of ice cream, various sizes and toppings packaged separately, SweetFrog started bringing the goodies to the masses, instead of the other way around. They also harnessed the power of social media, and have set up a delivery schedule, which sends their drivers in a new direction daily. In this day and age, where you really have to think twice about having a half gallon of ice cream taking up valuable space in the freezer, they've now made it possible for families to have little mini-celebrations for things like birthdays and appreciation days, complete with a frozen treat that they don't have to worry about.
Frank's Bakery is marking its 75th year in business this 2020.
In this climate of keep up or go under, Frank's did decide to close for a bit, and developed a plan to operate within the guidelines, and update their technology. They're now offering take out, curbside and delivery and have an online ordering option available as well. And while they are allowed to have about five customers inside their actual shop at one time, they're strongly encouraging customers to wear a mask.
When I drove down State Street Wednesday, and saw that Open sign, I couldn't help but feel like perhaps a little bit of normalcy had returned to our area. And perhaps there was some light at the end of the tunnel. But at the very least, there'd be donuts and cookies and cakes, once again.
It would seem we are a ways away from being able to meet a friend for a quick bite inside our favorite restaurant. But it's encouraging to see the creativity and innovation of so many local eateries. Their drive to survive all of this, and continue to comfort the best way they know how -- with great food -- is a great example of our tenacity and endurance as people.
Below is a listing of Bangor restaurants, and the services they currently provide. Know of a restaurant or bar we should add to this list? Let us know here, and we'll add it.