Several Maine Restaurants Defy Democrat Gov. Janet Mills’ Executive Order, Reopen

LEON NEAL/AFP/Getty Images
LEON NEAL/AFP/Getty Images

Several Maine businesses said they will defy Democrat Gov. Janet Mills’ executive order closing dine-in restaurants to the public because of the coronavirus and will open as soon as Saturday.

Red Maple Inn announced on Facebook that “enough is enough” and they will open as soon as Saturday at 11:00 a.m.

Bald Mountain Camps Resort also said their restaurant would reopen as soon as this weekend.

Sunday River Brewing Company opened on Friday, with hundreds of people showing up in support. Parking lots were full, and there were lines of people waiting to get a seat, WCSH reported.

The state health and liquor inspectors revoked both the restaurant’s liquor and health licenses later that evening. Owner Rick Savage said he will continue to operate, but as of Saturday, Savage updated the Brewing Company’s Facebook page notifying patrons that it was closed until further notice because the state took his permit away and he was checking on the status of his federal permit:

According to the Red Maple Inn’s Facebook page, the sheriff has warned the restaurant that it could lose its liquor license:

“I am not promising anything,” the Red Maple Inn wrote in a post. “But I have been forewarned from the sheriff that they will take our license. Per the Attorney General. Well I want the Govenor [sic] to come do this. I support Paul LePage to lead us.”

Bald Mountain Camps Resort said its restaurant would be open from 4:00 to 8:00 p.m. for takeout and reservation-only dine-in service.

“Come on down today from 4-8, check out our new menu, get a steamed lobster, or Prime rib! Call for take out, or call for a dine in reservation. See you soon! Be well and stay healthy friends!” the restaurant wrote on Facebook Saturday morning.

Bald Mountain Camps Resort owner Stephen Philbrick told WCSH he received a call from the state liquor board warning him that if he did not close, the board would revoke his liquor license.

Philbrick said he plans to reopen in some way but now says the restaurant is back to takeout only in keeping with the state’s guidelines.

“I don’t think we’re listened to, it’s that simple,” Philbrick said.

Maine entered the first phase of Mills’ plan to reopen the state’s economy on Friday. Restaurants are in phase two, with a tentative reopening of June 1.

Under phase one of the governor’s plan, health care from Maine-licensed providers, personal services such as hair salons and barbershops, and outdoor recreation are allowed to reopen as long as they meet social distancing guidelines.

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