Restaurants dish up deals for social distancing

Chairs are upside down on tables at the South Beach Fish Market on Wednesday, where patrons lined up at lunchtime to take advantage of carry-out cuisine during a state-mandated prohibition of on-site consumption. (Photo by Kenneth Lipp)

LINCOLN COUNTY — There’s a prohibition against on-site consumption in restaurants statewide, but area eateries are spreading the word about how to fill up by takeout and delivery.

Effective Tuesday, Gov. Kate Brown ordered all restaurants and bars in the state to limit service to takeout, drive-thru and delivery in a move to slow the spread of coronavirus through the community. To aid local businesses and inform readers of options to keep enjoying the area’s exceptional fare, the News-Times put out a call for menus and hours of operation for establishments providing food to go.

The response was overwhelming — more than 100 businesses contacted the News-Times for inclusion in a list that is printed in today’s paper and will run for the duration of the service restriction. The list represents every community in the county, from Lincoln City to Yachats, some of which have expanded delivery options. We’ve also created a special page on our website for the listings,

The Greater Newport Chamber of Commerce has also created a Facebook page for takeout offerings, which it will soon expand. Chamber Executive Director Judy Kuhl said, “We’ve actually decided to not just include our membership but all restaurants, because we really feel it’s vital to support the whole community. This is going to devastate these businesses, and some of them probably won’t recover. It’s really important that we all shop local and support our community through this crisis.”

While the governor’s order is a clear burden on the local service industry, most businesses have complied with the directive. However, according to Toledo Police Chief Michael Pace, his department received tips on Tuesday that a bar in town was still serving on site. Officers visited the business and found the tips to be accurate. The owner was advised regarding the governor’s order and voluntarily agreed to shut down, Pace said.

Violation of Brown’s order is a Class C misdemeanor, which is punishable by up to 30 days in jail, a fine of up to $1,250 or both.