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On Monday, Colorado state officials suspended the license of a Castle Rock restaurant that defied state orders to open on Mother’s Day, permitting a large crowd to gather inside the restaurant’s dining room. Statewide public health orders are still limiting restaurants to take-out and delivery services amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The COVID-19 pandemic, along with the lockdown restrictions that have followed as a result, is not something to take lightly. They’re in place for a reason – to help slow the spread and flatten the curve. And in light of a Castle Rock restaurant that was recently open for Mother’s Day, and deliberately defying state lockdown orders, Colorado state officials officially suspended their license. The state’s public health orders are very clear about limiting restaurant services to take-out and delivery services only during the pandemic.

Because of their defiance, there were consequences for the C&C Coffee and Kitchen, which had its business license indefinitely suspended until it no longer poses a threat to the health and safety of the public. According to Colorado’s governor, Jared Polis, the restaurant posed “an immediate health hazard.”

Following the suspension, the governor stated during a press conference, “I hope, I pray that nobody falls sick from businesses that chose to violate the law. But if the state didn’t act and more businesses followed suit, it’s a near guarantee that people would lose their lives and it would further delay the opening of legitimate businesses.”

C&C Coffee and Kitchen gained national attention following a Mother’s Day video that went viral, showing just how busy the restaurant was – with all tables and patio full, and a huge line forming out the door.

Most concerning in the video was that not many people appeared to be wearing masks, or practicing any form of social distancing.

Amazingly, even a day after the suspension, the restaurant was still open, and there were still customers choosing to dine in!

The restaurant’s owner, April Arellano, said to Colorado Community Media, “I expected it to be busy. I never expected this. I’m so happy so many people came out to support the constitution and stand up for what is right. We did our time. We did our two weeks. We did more than two weeks…and we were failing. We had to do something.”

Currently, Colorado is in its second phase of their Safer at Home restrictions.

According to the website, “Coloradans are no longer ordered to stay home, but are strongly advised to stay at home. Critical businesses are open and non-critical businesses are operating with restrictions.”

Those second phase restrictions still are quite clear that all restaurants continue to operate on a take-out or delivery only basis for the remainder of the second level.

Regarding the restaurant’s blatant disregard for the rules, Tri-County Health Department spokesperson, Becky O’Guin, said to Colorado Community Media, “We are disappointed that C&C Breakfast & Korean Kitchen, a Cookies and Crema Company in Castle Rock, has decided to ignore the Governor’s Safer at Home order and open up today with no attention to social distancing.”

She added, “This decision runs the risk of undermining the impact that other Douglas County businesses and residents have achieved over the last seven weeks by taking various social distancing measures. As the entity charged with enforcing the Governor’s statewide Safer at Home Public Health Order, we will follow up with this restaurant to ensure that they, like other restaurants in the county, take appropriate steps to protect the public health, by limiting service to curbside and take-out service.”

Just a friendly reminder to just stay inside until all this blows over – it’s not worth it.

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